<p>Surgery is one of the established modes of initial definitive treatment for a majority of oral cancers. Invasion of bony or cartilaginous structures by advanced upper aero-digestive tract cancer has been considered an indication for primary surgery on the basis of historic experience of poor responsiveness to radiation therapy . The mandible is a key structure both in the pathology of intra-oral tumours and their surgical management. It bars easy surgical access to the oral cavity, yet maintaining its integrity is vital for function and cosmesis. Management of tumours that involve or abut the mandible requires specific understanding of the pattern of spread and routes of tumour invasion into the mandible. This facilitates the employment of mandibular sparing approaches like marginal mandibulectomy and mandibulotomy, as opposed to segmental or hemimandibulectomy which causes severe functional problems, as the mandibular continuity is lost. Accurate preoperative assessment that combines clinical examination and imaging along with the understanding of the pattern of spread and routes of invasion is essential in deciding the appropriate level and extent of mandibular resection in oral squamous cell carcinoma. Studies have shown that local control rates achieved with marginal mandibulectomy are comparable with that of segmental mandibulectomy. In carefully selected patients, marginal mandibulectomy is an oncologically safe procedure to achieve good local control and provides a better quality of life. This article aims to review the mechanism of spread, evaluation and prognosis of mandibular invasion, various techniques and role of mandibular conservation in oral squamous cell carcinoma. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.</p>
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L. Pa Rao, Shukla, Mc, Sharma, Vb, and Pandey, Mb, “Mandibular conservation in oral cancer”, Surgical Oncology, vol. 21, pp. 109-118, 2012.