Dr Leo Pang is on a mission to make a difference

With no national or international screening program for early detection of head and neck cancer, the Royal North Shore Hospital (RNSH) ear, nose and throat (ENT) surgeon has set his sights on changing the landscape.

In March, Dr Pang held the first Australian screening clinic at Royal North Shore Hospital to raise awareness about head and neck cancer and offered free screening to detect early cancers. With over 60 members of the public attending the one day clinic another one is in planning for later I the year.  

“Head and neck cancers rank seventh in Australia and early detection is key in the fight against cancer” Dr Pang said.

Together with my colleagues at Royal North Shore we are pioneering a screening program that could pave the way for future screening programs, allowing for early detection of head and neck cancer.”

Member of the public participated in the simple 15-minute screening program which included a questionnaire, risk factor assessment and a clinical examination. They were informed about the results and risk stratified into low, intermediate, or high risk for head and neck cancer, with appropriate investigations and follow up arranged before leaving the clinic.

With the support of the Surgical Education Research and Training (SERT) Institute at Royal North Shore Hospital, the program and results will be analysed and incorporated in future service delivery planning.  Dr Pang is committed to increasing community awareness about head and neck cancer and conducting free screening clinic. He will continue working on improving the program, reaching out to local GPs and advertising in the community. He is already planning the next screening clinic to be held later in the year which will be free and open to anyone in the community. 

Inline picture on the left shows Dr Leo Pang (left) demonstrating a clinical examination on a medical student who volunteered to support this clinic on the day.

Dr Leo Pang (third from the right) with his team of nurses, doctors and medical students on the inaugural Head and Neck Cancer screening clinic day held on 11 Mar 2024.