FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Henry wanted to a bump on his tongue checked out. He was relieved when he heard the news from Dr. Phillip Andrews.
"I think the chance that it's cancer is very close to zero," Andrews told him.
Henry came to the Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists of Florida on Saturday morning for a free cancer screening. The charity event, sponsored by 21st Century C.A.R.E., is part of 300 worldwide free screenings for Oral, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness Week.
"It's just like any other cancer, the quicker you find it, the smaller it is, the easier it is to cure," Andrews said, "it's a much lesser known cancer because it's less frequent."
But more than 50,000 people will be diagnosed with mouth and throat cancer this year. It affects the way you speak and swallow. Many of your daily functions are radically altered.
"A lot of times it's silent. We see people who don't have any symptoms at all until they have a lump in their neck or they have pain in their ear," Andrews said.
The two main causes for mouth and throat cancer are smoking and HPV, which Andrews says is becoming "incredibly prevalent."