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Acta Otorhinolaryngol Ital. 2013 Oct;33(5):353-6.

Palliative combined treatment for unresectable cutaneous basosquamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck.

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  • 1Clinic of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery, Department of Surgical Sciences, University of Florence, Italy;


in English, Italian

A case is presented of a patient with a skin basosquamous cell carcinoma of the frontal region infiltrating the cerebral tissue and with a widespread unresectable regional metastatic ulceration of the left parotid region. The patient underwent combined palliative treatment: surgical coverage of the ulceration by means of a pectoralis mayor flap transposition and radiotherapy. After 18 months of follow-up, no signs of tumour progression were noted, the patient is currently free from pain, no increase in trismus was seen, and a slight gain in weight was recorded. Unresectable cancer is mainly treated by concurrent chemoradiation; radiotherapy, however, is contraindicated in deep neoplastic ulcerations with exposure of large vessels. The data reported suggest that surgical coverage of an unresectable neoplastic ulcer is feasible, and combined with early administration of radiation permits a palliative approach in an otherwise untreatable condition.


Basosquamous cell carcinoma; Head and neck cancer; Palliative radiotherapy; Palliative surgery

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