Quantifying fibrosis in head and neck cancer treatment: an overview

Emma C. Moloney, Markus Brunner*, Ashlin J. Alexander, Jonathan Clark

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Background Fibrosis is a common late complication of radiotherapy and/or surgical treatment for head and neck cancers. Fibrosis is difficult to quantify and formal methods of measure are not well recognized. The purpose of this review was to summarize the methods available to quantify neck fibrosis. Methods A PubMed search of articles was carried out using key words "neck" and "fibrosis." Results Many methods have been used to assess fibrosis, however, there is no preferred methodology. Specific to neck fibrosis, most studies have relied upon hand palpation rating scales. Indentation and suction techniques have been used to mechanically quantify neck fibrosis. There is scope to develop applications of ultrasound, dielectric, bioimpedance, and MRI techniques for use in the neck region. Conclusion Quantitative assessment of neck fibrosis is sought after in order to compare treatment regimens and improve quality of life outcomes in patients with head and neck cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1225-1231
Number of pages7
JournalHead and Neck
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • fibrosis
  • head and neck cancer
  • neck
  • radiotherapy


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