Management of the N0 Neck in Oral Cancer

  • Richard W. Nason
  • K. Alok Pathak
Part of the Head and Neck Cancer Clinics book series (HNCC)


The status of the regional lymph nodes is considered to be one of the major prognostic factors of oral cancer. Cure rates drop by ~50 % when the regional lymph nodes are involved. The N0 neck, by definition, means that involvement of the cervical lymph nodes is not evident on clinical assessment, including physical examination and imaging studies. Occult metastases are generally identified at the time of pathological examination of the neck dissection specimen. The long-standing debate concerning the management of the clinically negative neck centres on two basic and interrelated themes. The first is not a necessity in the timing of lymphadenectomy—the question of elective treatment of the neck versus a ‘wait and watch’ approach. The second is the anatomical extent of treatment, if occult metastatic disease is elected to be treated.


Sentinel Lymph Node Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy Oral Cancer Neck Dissection Radical Neck Dissection 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Surgery, Faculty of MedicineUniversity of ManitobaWinnipegCanada
  2. 2.Head and Neck Surgical Oncology, CancerCare Manitoba, Department of SurgeryUniversity of ManitobaWinnipegCanada

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