Management of the node negative early carcinoma tongue

Ajith Nilakantan, M. D. Venkatesh, Dilip Raghavan, Rakesh Datta

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Objective: To determine the role of thickness of the primary lesion in early Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) of the oral tongue for decision-making regarding the management of possible occult cervical node metastases. Setting: Tertiary referral centre. Patients: Patients who were treated by the authors for early (T1, T2) primary lesions in the oral tongue in two malignancy treatment centres of the Armed Forces Medical Services were included in this prospective study. Where the primary lesion was less than 04 mm in depth, the neck was not addressed electively. Those who developed nodal disease in the neck on follow up were subjected to comprehensive neck dissection. In those patients where the tumour thickness was more than 04 mm, the neck was addressed with at least a supra-omohyoid neck dissection. Postoperative radiotherapy was given as per standard indications. The patients were followed up as per standard protocol. Results: Disease free survival rate achieved was 86% and this compares well with survival rates achieved by other workers. Conclusion: Treatment of neck nodes in early (T1,T2) SCC of the oral tongue can be expectant in cases where tumour thickness is less than 04 mm, but where it is more than 04 mm elective treatment of the neck is recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-232
Number of pages4
JournalIndian Journal of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 09-2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Surgery
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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