Q:

What is the function of the nasopharynx?

A:

The nasopharynx, the upper area of the throat behind the nose, is the space above the soft part of the roof of the mouth that allows the passage of air from the nose to the throat, according to Healthline. The nasopharynx also provides drainage for lymphatic fluids.

The nasopharynx, the oropharynx and the hypopharynx make up the pharynx, which is part of the respiratory system. The soft upper part of the mouth separates the nasopharynx from the oropharynx. According to Healthline, even when surrounding muscles flex, the nasopharynx stays open so that the person can breathe. Since the nasopharynx is made of tissue that traps bacteria and viruses that enter through the nose and mouth, testing the secretions from the nasopharynx helps find viruses and bacteria that may cause illness or disease, notes MedlinePlus.

Benign and malignant tumors can develop in the pharynx. The American Cancer Society states that benign tumors are rare and occur more often in children and young adults. Malignant cancers in the nasopharynx can spread to other parts of the body. According to WebMD, only seven in 1 million people get nasopharyngeal cancer in North America, and it is most common in southeast China. Radiation therapy, surgery, chemotherapy and medications are used to treat nasopharyngeal cancer.

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the function of the oropharynx?

    A:

    The oropharynx accepts air from the nasopharynx and passes it to the laryngeal pharynx. It also accepts food from the mouth and passes it to the esophagus. The oropharynx resides below the soft palate and above the epiglottis. Taken in totality, the pharynx connects the oral cavity and nasal cavity with the esophagus and windpipe.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you whistle with your mouth?

    A:

    Whistling Tom explains that the first step in whistling with your mouth is to put the tip of your tongue against the roof of your mouth. The air that flows between the roof of your mouth and the top of your tongue is what dictates the note that leaves your lips.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the function of the nose?

    A:

    The nose is an integral part of respiration and olfactory sensation. Both roles include varying components and techniques that work effectively and efficiently.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are the symptoms of strep throat?

    A:

    Symptoms of strep throat include a severe and sudden sore throat, painful or difficult swallowing, fever in excess of 101 degrees Fahrenheit, yellow or white spots on the tonsils or in the throat, swollen lymph nodes or tonsils and a bright red throat or the appearance of red spots on the roof of the mouth. According to WebMD, a rough rash may also spread over the chest, neck and body.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore