Prospective randomized study of selective neck dissection versus observation for N0 neck of early tongue carcinoma
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Background. There are controversies on the benefits of elective neck dissection (END) for oral tongue carcinoma. Method. This is a prospective randomized study of elective selective I, II, III neck dissection versus observation for N0 neck of stage I to II oral tongue carcinoma. There were 35 patients on the observation arm and 36 patients on the END arm. The main outcome assessment parameters are noderelated mortality and disease-specific survival rate. Results. There were 11 patients in the observed arm and 2 patients in the END arm who developed nodal recurrence alone without associated local or distant recurrence. All 13 patients were salvaged, and no patient died of nodal recurrence. The 5-year disease-specific survival rate was 87% for the observation arm and was 89% for the END arm; the 2% difference was not significant. Conclusion. Observation may be an acceptable alternative to END if strict adherence to a cancer surveillance protocol is followed.
Head & Neck
Copyright 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article: Prospective randomized study of selective neck dissection versus observation for N0 neck of early tongue carcinoma, Head & Neck Volume 31, Issue 6, pages 765–772, June 2009, which has been published in final form at http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/hed.21033