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September 1967

Use of Kirschner Wires to Map Floor of the Mouth Lesions

Author Affiliations

From the Surgical Service, Head and Neck Section, Wadsworth Hospital (Drs. Hodosh and Acquarelli), Veterans Administration Center (Dr. Hodosh), and University of California School of Medicine, Los Angeles (Dr. Acquarelli).

Arch Otolaryngol. 1967;86(3):354. doi:10.1001/archotol.1967.00760050356022

A SERIOUS DIFFICULTY in dissections for malignant floor of the mouth lesions (combined with radical neck dissections) is identifying the borders of the lesion, especially after the initial incision in the mouth. The difficulty is usually not on the lateral side, which is delineated by the mandible and where no problem with tissue planes is encountered. The problem area is the soft tissue portion, toward the tongue, where after the incision is made, the lesion becomes distorted. Bleeding at the site adds further difficulty to identifying the tumor and its borders.

A simple method of mapping the line of resection and keeping in the planned plane would simplify surgery and give a greater chance of complete resection. Such a simple method is described using small size (35/ 1,000 inch) Kirschner wires.

After the radical neck dissection is completed, the wires are placed around the floor of the mouth lesion at

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