“This open access paper funded by charity Saving Faces and Cancer Research UK (CRUK) is ground-breaking. OMFS cancer surgeons from all over the UK were involved in the study, and British Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (BAOMS) is proud that this research was completed and published.
The study was possible because of a unique collaboration between 68 UK-based surgeons treating 614 patients at 27 UK hospitals. The research compared leaving or taking out neck glands that did not have obvious secondary cancers at the same time as removing the patient’s small mouth cancer. OMFS know that between 20 and 30 in every 100 patients with small mouth cancers have tiny microscopic cancer deposits in their neck glands that can’t be picked up by any scanners. Now OMFS have the evidence about the risks and benefits of removing the neck glands in early mouth cancer. This information will help patients participate in decisions about their treatment.
To mis-quote John F Kennedy in this the 50th anniversary year of the moon landings, OMFS surgeons want to do randomised surgical trials ‘not because they are easy, but because they are hard; because that goal will serve to organise and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone’.
This paper is a credit to all involved.”
– Patrick Magennis, British Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (BAOMS) Chair and Saving Faces Deputy Chair of TrusteesOperating-Theatre-Journal-November-2019