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Head Neck. 2003 Apr;25(4):267-73.

Squamous cell carcinoma of the buccal mucosa: one institution's experience with 119 previously untreated patients.

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The Department of Head and Neck Surgery, The University of Texas, M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, 1515 Holcombe, Box 441, Houston, Texas 77030-4009, USA.



Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the buccal mucosa is a rare, but especially aggressive, form of oral cavity cancer, associated with a high rate of locoregional recurrence and poor survival. We reviewed our institution's experience with 119 consecutive, previously untreated patients with buccal SCC.


We reviewed the charts of 250 patients who were seen at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center between January, 1974, and December, 1993. Of these, 119 were untreated and were subsequently treated exclusively at our institution. Patients who were previously treated elsewhere or whose lesions arose in other sites and only secondarily involved the buccal mucosa were excluded.


Patients with T1- or T2-sized tumors had only a 78% and 66% 5-year survival, respectively. Muscle invasion, Stensen's duct involvement, and extracapsular spread of involved lymph nodes were all associated with decreased survival (p <.05). Surgical salvage for patients with locoregional recurrence after radiation therapy was rarely successful.


SCC of the buccal mucosa is a highly aggressive form of oral cavity cancer, with a tendency to recur locoregionally. Patients with buccal mucosa SCC have a worse stage-for-stage survival rate than do patients with other oral cavity sites.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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