CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 · Indian J Med Paediatr Oncol 2015; 36(04): 249-254
DOI: 10.4103/0971-5851.171548

Comparison of postoperative complications in advanced head and neck cancer patients receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by surgery versus surgery alone

Poonam Joshi
Department of Head and Neck Surgery, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Amit Joshi
Department of Medical Oncology, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Kumar Prabhash
Department of Medical Oncology, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Vanita Noronha
Department of Medical Oncology, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Pankaj Chaturvedi
Department of Head and Neck Surgery, Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
› Author Affiliations
Financial support and sponsorship Nil.


Background: Head and neck cancer is the third most common cancer in India with 60% presenting in advanced stages. There is the emerging role of neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NACT) in the management of these advanced cancers. There is a general perception that complication rates are higher with the use of NACT. Materials and Methods: This is a retrospectively collected data of head and neck cancer patients operated at our hospital from March 2013 to September 2014. A total of 205 patients were included in the study. These patients were studied in two groups. Group 1 included 153 patients who underwent surgery alone, and Group 2 included 52 patients who received 2-3 cycles of NACT followed by surgery. Results: The mean age of the population was 51 years in the Group 1 and 45 years in Group 2. The hospital stay and readmissions in postoperative period were similar in the two groups. In this study, the complication rate was 37.9% in the surgery patients and 30.8% in the NACT patients (P = 0.424). Conclusion: The postoperative complication rates in patients who received NACT followed by surgery were not significantly different from those who underwent surgery.

Publication History

Publication Date:
12 July 2021 (online)

© 2015. Indian Society of Medical and Paediatric Oncology. This is an open access article published by Thieme under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonDerivative-NonCommercial-License, permitting copying and reproduction so long as the original work is given appropriate credit. Contents may not be used for commercial purposes, or adapted, remixed, transformed or built upon. (

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