Nearly 6,000 miles west from Downtown Los Angeles lies the island of Saipan. Part of the Mariana Islands, Saipan is popular among both Asian and American tourists who appreciate the stunning scenery, tropical weather and welcoming culture. One local tradition on the island is chewing betel nut, a mild stimulant somewhat akin to drinking coffee or smoking cigarettes. The betel nut is highly carcinogenic, and incidences of oral cancer in the Marianas are high.

In recent years, many of the more difficult cases of oral cancer in Saipan have found their way to Daniel Kwon, MD, a head and neck cancer surgeon in Keck Medicine of USC’s Caruso Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery.

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