DURING the course of a follow-up study on 186 patients with intraoral cancer a number of interesting facts were encountered that were worthy of further consideration and that led to further clarification of our therapeutic approach. Many observations of others have been confirmed, the most striking of which is that the cure rate for intraoral carcinoma (other than that of the lip) remains distressingly low. While this had been appreciated to some extent during the course of observing and treating these unfortunate patients, the statistics were such as to encourage me to analyze further the clinicopathologic data with the hope that the total patient salvage might be increased.
Shortly after the study began, it became obvious to my colleagues and me that, although many of these lesions should lend themselves to early discovery, we were not seeing the patients under ideal circumstances. Many presented advanced lesions when first seen. X-ray