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Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1987 Nov;113(11):1191-5.

Microvascular invasion in cancer of the oral cavity and oropharynx.

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  • 1Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University of Texas Health Science Center, Dallas 75235.


The presence of squamous cell carcinoma within capillaries and/or venules in the immediate vicinity of primary lesions of the oral cavity and oropharynx may be related to regional lymph node metastasis. To evaluate this possibility, we have reviewed the clinical and histopathologic features of 43 consecutive cases of previously untreated T2 or greater squamous cell carcinoma of these sites managed with simultaneous surgical treatment of the primary neoplasm and the neck. The incidence of histologically proved cervical metastasis for all lesions with vascular invasion compared with those without vascular involvement was highly significant. No statistical correlation was found for the clinical stage of neck disease or for the other pathologic features of the primary tumor, ie, size, appearance, differentiation, depth of invasion, periphery of lesion, inflammatory infiltrate, and perineural invasion, when compared with the histopathologic status of regional lymph nodes.

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