Introduction: The Oral Cavity Epidermoid Carcinoma (OCEC) represents 4–6% of human malignant tumours. Although CT and MRI still play a major role in diagnosing such metastatic nodes presurgically, the Positrons Emission Tomography (PET), have been introduced in our practice and seems to improve its validity.
Objectives: To establish a thorough statistical basis that evaluates CT, MRI and PET reliability for detection of lymph node extension at presurgical stages.
Materials and methods: We include 52 patients diagnosed and treated for OCEC in our center between September 2007 and October 2009. The sample is a prospective cohort, were all patients were suggested for surgical treatment, and presurgically stadified on a basis of clinical exploration, CT, MRI and PET. The results of such staging were compared with the histological real extension of the disease. The statistical analysis was performed by means of SPSS 15.0 to validate specificity and sensibility index.
Results: A total of 73 hemicervical dissection were made in our sample, and in 21 of these was possible to find 30 metastatic lymph nodes. Statistical concordance between CT and histological findings showed an interclass correlation of 0.237. RMI showed 0.506 of interclass correlation, and PET accomplished a level of 0.908. Concerning the Kappa index, PET revealed a correlation of 0.7714.
Conclusions: In our study, PET revealed excellent indexes of correlation in terms of presurgical cervical lymph node extension of OCEC. Moreover, our results prove a higher reliability of PET compared to CT and RMI when staging a presurgical OCEC.
Conflict of interest : None declared.