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April 1954


Author Affiliations

From the Department of Otolaryngology of the Lahey Clinic.

AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1954;59(4):431-433. doi:10.1001/archotol.1954.00710050443003

AN EMERGENCY may be defined as an unforeseen combination of circumstances which requires immediate action. The treatment of neoplastic disease is rarely an emergency; but when cancer causes hemorrhage, obstruction of the airway, or visceral perforation, prompt intervention is necessary. Under conditions of stress the goal of permanent cure of the primary disease may not receive proper consideration. The relief of the complication may prevent the eventual success of definitive treatment. It is our belief that this occurs frequently in obstructing laryngeal cancer. The purpose of this contribution is to reassess the conventional management of obstructive laryngeal cancer and to indicate a method of management whereby certain deficiencies may be avoided.

CONVENTIONAL MANAGEMENT  The present treatment of obstructive laryngeal cancer has developed as a result of the almost universal acceptance of the rule that a patient should not be subjected to a laryngectomy without a prior biopsy positive for cancer.

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