Head and neck multidisciplinary team meetings: effect on patient management

Markus Brunner*, Sinclair M. Gore, Rebecca L. Read, Ashlin Alexander, Ankur Mehta, Michael Elliot, Chris Milross, Michael Boyer, Jonathan R. Clark

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Background. The purpose of this study was for us to present our findings on the prospectively audited impact of head and neck multidisciplinary team meetings on patient management. Methods. We collected clinical data, the pre-multidisciplinary team meeting treatment plan, the post-multidisciplinary team meeting treatment plans, and follow-up data from all patients discussed at a weekly multidisciplinary team meeting and we recorded the changes in management. Results. One hundred seventy-two patients were discussed in 39 meetings. In 52 patients (30%), changes in management were documented of which 20 (67%) were major. Changes were statistically more likely when the referring physician was a medical or radiation oncologist, when the initial treatment plan did not include surgery, and when the histology was neither mucosal squamous cell cancer nor a skin malignancy. Compliance to the multidisciplinary team meeting treatment recommendation was 84% for all patients and 70% for patients with changes in their treatment recommendation. Conclusion. Head and neck multidisciplinary team meetings changed management in almost a third of the cases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1046-1050
Number of pages5
JournalHead and Neck
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • head and neck cancer
  • multidisciplinary team
  • multidisciplinary team meetings


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