Lymph node in oral cancer

Q) Correct about N staging in oral carcinoma

a) N1 ipsilateral more than 6 cm

b) N2a ipsilateral single node between 3-6 cm

c) N2b is Multiple ipsilateral more than 6 cm

d) N2c is Bilateral more than 6 cm

Answer is b

N2a ipsilateral between 3-6 cm

Cervical lymph nodes are divided into (i) Submandibular (II) Upper jugular, (iii) Middle  jugular (iv) Lower jugular and (v) Posterior triangle

Cancer of oral cavity and lips mainly go to lymph nodes I, II, and III

Tongue skip metastasis to level III and IV is common 

Oropharynx - II, III, IV and contralateral

TNM Staging


NX Regional lymph nodes cannot be assessed
N0 No regional lymph node metastasis
N1 : Metastasis in a single ipsilateral lymph node <3 cm in greatest dimension
N2a:  Metastasis in a single ipsilateral lymph node >3 cm but not more than 6 cm
N2b:  Metastasis in multiple ipsilateral lymph nodes, none >6 cm in greatest dimension
N2c : Metastasis in bilateral or contralateral lymph nodes, none >6 cm in greatest dimension
N3 Metastasis in any lymph node >6 cm

Ref: Bailey 709