Head & Neck

Associate Professor Eng Ooi is a key member of the Flinders multi-disciplinary Head and Neck cancer team. He has experience in head and neck surgery for benign and malignant (cancer) disease from his training in Adelaide and in Toronto.

He is conducting research into developing a blood test that can detect head and neck cancers.

Tonsil cancer associated with a virus (human papilloma virus) is the fastest growing head and neck cancer in  Australia. Associate Professor Ooi has received a Garnett Passe and Rodney Williams Memorial research grant to conduct research into developing a blood based biomarker for HPV HNSCC (tonsil cancer). This is very exciting as there is currently no such blood test available. Please ask for a referral to see Associate Professor Ooi if you are concerned that you may have tonsil or throat cancer.

Associate Professor Ooi is now offering privately insured patients with tonsil and tongue base cancer the option of trans-oral robotic surgery (TORS) using the Medrobotic flex system at Memorial Hospital. He is currently being proctored by experienced robotic surgeons so that different treatment options an be offered to his patients. The Memorial Hospital is the first Australian Hospital to purchase the Medrobotics system

He specialises in head and neck “lumps”, cancers, salivary gland (parotid and submandibular) diseases especially stone obstruction, and removal of benign and cancerous growths in the neck.

He is also able to offer patients the option of sialoendoscopy to remove the salivary stone (like Urologists removing kidney stones) in selected cases without removing the salivary gland.

He has received training in performing a thyroidectomy for thyroid cancers from his training in Toronto. Associate Professor Ooi is a specialist ENT surgeon who can operate on your thyroid cancer including thyroid cancers which have spread to your neck lymph glands.

ENT surgeons have experience in the management of your voice as well as your thyroid disease. Dr Ooi performs micro-laryngoscopy’s for patients with a hoarse voice, vocal cord palsy, vocal polyps and cancers.

Surgery on your parotid gland (parotidectomy) or larynx (voice box) usually involves a general anaesthetic and a stay in hospital that could be overnight or several days depending on the type of surgery performed.

He works extensively with other members of the Flinders multi-disciplinary Head and Neck cancer team to offer a treatment plan for all head and neck cancers so that patients can make an informed choice as to which treatment is most suitable for them. The best outcomes for patient are when their care is managed in a multi-disciplinary setting with discussion in a MDT meeting and Head and Neck cancer clinic.

What is required for the management of head and neck cancers?

  • Diagnostic endoscopy
  • Biopsy
  • Imaging
    • CT scan
    • MRI scan
    • PET scan
  • Discussion in a multi-disciplinary meeting and the Flinders Head and Neck Clinic
  • Surgery
  • Radiotherapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Dental care
  • Speech therapy
  • Dietician
  • Social worker support

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