chapter  66
1 Pages

MALIGNANT NECK GLANDS AND THEIR MANAGEMENT INTRODUCTION

The deep cervical chain of lymph nodes runs from the mastoid process and the area around the jaw at the top of the neck to the area above the collar-bone (the supraclavicular fossa) at its lower end. These lymph nodes are part of the body’s lymphatic drainage system. In the context of head and neck cancer they are important because they may become involved with deposits of tumour originating anywhere in the upper air and food passage-the nose, sinuses, post-nasal space, mouth, oropharynx, larynx or hypopharynx. Neck glands may also be the site of metastatic deposits of tumour arising elsewhere in the body. Particularly important primary sites include the lung, the breast, and (in the case of left lower neck nodes) the stomach. Finally, the cervical lymph nodes may themselves be the seat of primary tumours of the lymphatic system-lymphomas of the two classical types, namely Hodgkin’s and nonHodgkin’s lymphoma.