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April 1990

Patterns of Cervical Node Metastases From Squamous Carcinoma of the Larynx

Author Affiliations

From the Head and Neck Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116(4):432-435. doi:10.1001/archotol.1990.01870040054013

• We undertook a retrospective review of 247 previously untreated consecutive patients from 1965 to 1986 with primary squamous cell carcinoma of the supraglottic or glottic larynx to ascertain the prevalence of neck node metastases by neck level. The 247 patients underwent a total of 262 radical neck dissections. Patients were grouped by clinical neck status at the time of neck dissection: elective dissection in the NO neck; immediate therapeutic dissection in the N+ neck; and subsequent therapeutic dissection in the NO neck that over time converted clinically to N+. Detailed analysis revealed a predominance of neck node metastases in levels II, III, and IV for all clinical neck groups. Level V was rarely involved, but always in conjunction with neck node metastases in levels II, III, or IV (ie, N2 disease). Level I was rarely involved; involvement occurred with neck node metastases in levels II, III, or IV 75% of the time. Level I involvement correlated with T3 or T4 primary tumors exhibiting histologic extralaryngeal spread. These data support the trend toward selective limited neck dissection in both NO and N1 patients.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1990;116:432-435)