Last Year's Operation


During ISCOMS 2022, we showed an example of a potential surgery of the future; Tongue cancer removal guided by fluorescence molecular imaging. Prof. M.J.H. Witjes MD PhD, Oral and Maxillofacial surgeon and principle investigator of the Optical Molecular Imaging Group (OMIG). He guided us through the surgery and showed what added value the use of fluorescence during surgery can have.

The University Medical Centre Groningen is one of the seven academic centers for the treatment of patients with oral cancer in the Netherlands. For these patients, the main pillar of treatment is surgery, and without treatment mortality is up to 100% within six months. The biggest challenge during these procedures is to remove the complete tumor. However, tumor positive tumor margins after surgery remain high which has a mayor impact on patient prognosis. Tumor margin control has not improved in the last decades, mainly because the only intraoperative feedback surgeons have is their visual and tactile information. Fluorescence molecular imaging is a technique that can highlight disease such as cancer and aid surgeons in detecting tumor deposits not visible to the naked eye. The data from clinical trials show that this technology is able to identify tumor positive margins during surgery. The usage of this technique might lead to an improvement in oral cancer surgery and prognosis.