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VIDEO: Elective neck dissection during primary surgery improves oral cancer survival




CHICAGO – Patients who had elective neck dissection at the time of primary surgery for oral cancers had a 12.5% better overall survival rate than did patients who had therapeutic neck dissections at the time of recurrence.

The risk of death was reduced by 36% among patients randomized in a phase III trial to neck lymph node dissection at the time of primary surgery, and the risk of recurrences was reduced by 55%, reported Dr. Anil D’Cruz of the head and neck service of Tata Memorial Centre, Mumbai, India.

“Elective neck dissection should be the standard of care for early oral, node-negative squamous cell cancers, based on the findings of our study,” he said at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

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