The status of the resection margin as a prognostic factor in the treatment of head and neck carcinoma

J Craniomaxillofac Surg. 1991 Oct;19(7):314-8. doi: 10.1016/s1010-5182(05)80339-7.


The value of the status of the resection margin as a prognostic factor after surgical treatment was investigated in 80 patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity, oropharynx and laryngohypopharynx. The relation of locoregional recurrence with the presence or absence of tumour at the surgical margin was analysed together with other indications for postoperative radiotherapy. Locoregional recurrence was observed in 20% and was correlated with tumour thickness over 5 mm, spidery growth and tumour-positive margins. Tumour-positive margin as a single indication for postoperative irradiation was not related to an increased recurrence rate. When however occurring together with other indications for postoperative irradiation, the recurrence rate was higher than in the patient group with the same number of indications for postoperative radiotherapy but without tumour at the surgical margins.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Carcinoma in Situ / pathology
  • Carcinoma in Situ / surgery
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / pathology*
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / radiotherapy
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / secondary
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / surgery*
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Female
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Hypopharyngeal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Hypopharyngeal Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Hypopharyngeal Neoplasms / surgery
  • Laryngeal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Laryngeal Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Laryngeal Neoplasms / surgery
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mouth Neoplasms / pathology
  • Mouth Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Mouth Neoplasms / surgery
  • Neck Dissection
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Oropharyngeal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Oropharyngeal Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Oropharyngeal Neoplasms / surgery
  • Prognosis
  • Radiotherapy Dosage