The utility of intra-oral ultrasound in improving deep margin clearance of oral tongue cancer resections

Mustafa G. Bulbul, Osama Tarabichi, Anuraag S. Parikh, Byung C. Yoon, Amy Juliano, Peter M. Sadow, William Faquin, Matthew Gropler, Ronald Walker, Sidharth V. Puram, Mark A. Varvares

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Objectives: To investigate the potential utility of intra-oral ultrasound (IOUS) in guiding deep margin clearance and measuring depth of invasion (DOI) of oral tongue carcinomas (OTC). Materials and Methods: Retrospective chart review of consecutive patients with T1-T3 OTC who underwent intraoperative ultrasound-guided resection and a comparator group that had undergone resection without the use of IOUS both by a single surgeon. Data was extracted from operative, pathology and radiology reports. Deep margins and DOI were reviewed by a dedicated head and neck pathologist. Correlation between histologic and ultrasound DOI was assessed using Pearson correlation. Results: A total of 23 patients were included in the study cohort with a comparator group of 21 patients in the control group. None of the patients in the study cohort had a positive (cut-through) deep margin and the mean deep margin clearance was 8.5 ± 4.9 and 6.7 ± 3.8 for the IOUS and non-IOUS groups respectively (p-value 0.18) showing a non-significant improvement in the IOUS group. As a secondary outcome, there was a strong correlation between histologic and ultrasound DOI (0.9449). Conclusion: Ultrasound appears to be a potentially effective tool in guiding OTC resections. In this small series, IOUS facilitated deep margin clearance and resulted in a non-statistically significant increase in deep margin clearance. Intraoral ultrasound can accurately measure lesional DOI.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105512
JournalOral Oncology
StatePublished - Nov 2021


  • Deep margin
  • Depth of invasion
  • Intra-oral ultrasound
  • Intraoperative ultrasound
  • Oral tongue cancer
  • Oral tongue squamous cell carcinoma
  • Ultrasound


Dive into the research topics of 'The utility of intra-oral ultrasound in improving deep margin clearance of oral tongue cancer resections'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this