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May 1971

Immediate Functional Restoration of the Mandible After Surgical Treatment of Advanced Oral Cancer: A Simple Prosthesis

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Minneapolis Veterans Administration Hospital, and the University of Minnesota Hospital.

Arch Surg. 1971;102(5):447-449. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1971.01350050013004

A simple mandibular prosthesis, fabricated from siliconized rubber (Silastic) and Kirschner wires at the time of surgery, has been used to replace large segments of mandible after resections of squamous cell cancers in 25 patients. It was cosmetically satisfactory and was adequate to support the tongue and lower facial structures, allowing swallowing and good control of saliva, in the 16 patients who retained the prosthesis. Mandibular support and spacing were preserved during the period of tumor follow-up. At the present time, we would not recommend placement of the prosthesis in a heavily irradiated field since it failed in all four of such attempts. The prosthesis proved satisfactory for over four years in three patients, and over two years in an additional four, suggesting that it may be considered as a definitive mandibular replacement as well as a temporary measure.

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