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We handle cases across the United States. Allen Stewart is licensed to practice law in Texas, California, New York, Pennsylvania, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio and Arizona.

Intestinal Type Adenocarcinoma: An Overview

Sinus and Nasal Cancers Caused by Wood Dust Exposure

Intestinal Type Adenocarcinoma (ITAC) is extremely malignant. People diagnosed with this type of nasal cancer often have a poor prognosis. Intestinal type adenocarcinoma, or colonic-type adenocarcinoma, is a sinonasal cancer type. Intestinal-type refers to the tumors’ structure as they consist of mucin-secreting cell columns with growth patterns strongly resembling colorectal cancer cells. Intestinal Type Adenocarcinoma accounts for 3-4% of all Sinonasal malignancies.


Like other Sinonasal cancers, Intestinal Type Adenocarcinoma strongly resembles harmless illnesses such as a persistent sinus infection. Some of the symptoms include:

  • Upper tooth pain
  • Sinus pain
  • Facial swelling
  • Nosebleeds
  • Nasal discharge
  • Nasal obstruction


The American Cancer Society states that, in the event you have the forgoing persistent symptoms your doctor should refer you to an otolaryngologist who will more thoroughly examine your nasal passages and other head and neck areas. This may involve the use of small mirrors or a fiber optic scope. Doctors can also use imaging tests including x-rays, CT scans and MRIs to search for tumors, learn how far the cancer may have spread, or determine treatment effectiveness. Doctors can also conduct a biopsy. A biopsy is removing a small tissue sample for microscopic examination.


Treatments for nasal cancers depend on the cancer’s stage and grade. Those treatments include surgery to remove the tumor, radiation therapy and chemotherapy. Depending on the cancer’s progress, palliative care may be an option. Palliative care is, according to the World Health Organization, health care meant to ease a terminal patient’s pain and discomfort and enable them to live as actively as possible until death.

Stages and Grades

Nasal cavity cancers, like most other cancers, are separated into categories and stages depending on the cancer’s size and spread. Categories include T, which tracks the primary tumor’s size and spread: N, which tracks the cancer’s spread into nearby lymph nodes, and M, which tracks the cancer’s spread into distant organs or tissues. Once the cancer is sorted by category, that information is combined to assign an overall stage. Stages range from the least severe Stage 0 to the gravest Stage 4.


The study Sinonasal Adenocarcinoma: Update on Classification, Immunophenotype and Molecular Features (Leivo) states scientists identified a “remarkable association” between intestinal type adenocarcinoma diagnoses and long-term wood dust exposure.

The Leivo researchers consider intestinal type adenocarcinoma a “high-grade malignancy.” A study of 213 patients showed 50% developing recurrences, 8% developing lymph node metastases and 13% developing distant metastases. The Leivo study states that 60% of patients die from the disease.

The researchers said occupational dust exposure in the shoe and leather industries, as well as chromium and nickel, have also been implicated as causes of ITAC.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has studied wood dust and its connection to human cancer since 1994, and cancer’s connection to woodworking occupations since 1980. The agency stated in its 2012 monograph sufficient evidence exists proving the carcinogenicity of wood dust.

“Wood dust causes cancer of the nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses and of the nasopharynx,” the monograph read.


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