Unilateral serous otitis and reduced hearing often occur as a result of compromised function of the eustachian tube. Adults with these symptoms should be evaluated for the presence of a tumor in the nasopharynx.
Tumor in the nasopharynx may also present as nasal obstruction.
Metastases to the neck are often the first symptom. Eighty percent of these patients have spreading to cervical lymph nodes at the time of diagnosis.
Oropharynx and hypopharynx
Symptoms from the oropharynx and hypopharynx rarely occur before advanced stages, therefore the disease is often diagnosed late.
Symptoms may be (unilateral) sore throat, dysphagia, salivation, foul smell from the mouth (halitosis), foreign object sensation, and referred pain to the ear.
Palpable metastases to cervical lymph nodes are not uncommon at the time of diagnosis.