A Comparison of Clinicopathological Differences in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma in Patients Below and Above 40 Years of Age ZC46-ZC50
Dr. Srikant Natarajan,
Professor, Department of Oral Pathology, Manipal College of Dental Sciences,
Light House Hill Road, Mangalore-575001, Karnataka, India.
Introduction: Recent times have revealed an increase in incidence of Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OSCC) in young adults including those who lack association with typical risk factors such as tobacco. There are reported variations in clinical behaviour of tumours in young and older individuals.
Aim: Present study evaluated differences in clinicopathological characteristics between two groups of OSCC, below and above 40 years of age.
Materials and Methods: An analytical study was performed on two groups of OSCC patients, below and above 40 years of age. Clinicopathological parameters of site distribution, type of habit, histological grade, nodal metastasis, margin status, mitotic index and Argyrophilic Nucleolar Organizing Regions (AgNOR) count were compared. Chi-square test and Students t- test were applied for statistical analysis.
Results: Present study revealed that mean AgNOR count was significantly higher in older group (6.38) than younger group (4.27). However, no significant differences were noted in site distribution, tobacco habit, histological grade, mitotic index, nodal metastasis and status of resected surgical margins between the two age groups. A trend for increased metastasis and poor histological differentiation was also observed in the older and younger age group respectively. Most common site was buccal mucosa followed by tongue in both groups.
Conclusion: Reasons for documented variability in tumour characteristics between young and older patients are currently unclear. Difference in AgNOR count found in present study is suggestive of variability in proliferative and ploidy characteristics between different age groups and supports the hypothesis of genetic and epigenetic influences in development of oral cancer.