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Public knowledge of head and neck cancer.Studies show 60% of patients with newly diagnosed Head & Neck Squamous Cell Cancer in Ireland, present with advanced disease. A poor level of knowledge and awareness among the public of Head & Neck Cancer, is an important consideration in the often delayed presentation for medical attention in many of these cases. Our study surveyed 200 members of the public to assess their knowledge and awareness of Head & Neck Cancer. One hundred and forty (70%) of respondents had never encountered the term "Head & Neck Cancer". One hundred and forty six (73%) failed to identify excessive alcohol consumption as a risk factor. Less than 100 (50%) would have concern about persisting hoarseness or a prolonged oral ulcer. An urgent need exists to raise awareness of Head & Neck Cancer among the public in Ireland.