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Article
October 1991

The Role of Surgery in Rhabdomyosarcoma of the Head and Neck in Children

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Otolaryngology (Dr Healy) and Neurosurgery (Dr Black), and the Division of Plastic Surgery (Drs Upton and Ferraro), The Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1991;117(10):1185-1188. doi:10.1001/archotol.1991.01870220133025
Abstract

• The role of surgery in the treatment of rhabdomyosarcoma of the head and neck has diminished during the past 25 years. Treatment of this tumor in the pediatric population has involved radical radiation therapy and chemotherapy with little or no role for surgery. However, the potential effect of irradiation on facial growth and the appearance of secondary irradiation-induced tumors has raised the question as to whether surgery may once again play a role in the treatment of these patients. Advances in skull base and reconstructive surgery and microsurgical techniques have permitted a reconsideration of initial ablative surgery. The head and neck surgical team must be prepared to respond in those patients in whom craniofacial development is at risk or recurrence has occurred after radical chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy.

(Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1991;117:1185-1188)

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