Evaluation of diagnostic significance of lingual flange protrusion in patients with metastatic liver cancer with malignant neoplasia

The lingual flange – that is, the part of the tongue near the jaw – can be potentially used to detect liver metastasis in patients with malignant neoplasia. The finding, which appears in the Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine, makes use of tongue diagnosis to provide a link between lingual flange protrusion and metastatic liver cancer.

  • Researchers studied the data of 191 patients with malignant neoplasia. They took photos of the patients’ tongue and recorded instances of lingual flange protrusion as the positive standard.
  • The chi-square (χ2) test was used to understand the diagnostic value of the two variables, while the Mann-Whitney U test compared the levels of serological markers of the liver. Other data included the predictive values of the lingual flange protrusion, alkaline phosphatase (ALP), and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) levels.
  • The results showed that patients that had a lingual flange protrusion were more likely to get liver metastasis than those without it. Moreover, traditional diagnostic criteria and lingual flange protrusion did not show a significant difference.
  • ALP and LDH, which are serological markers for metastatic liver cancer, fared similarly with lingual flange protrusion.

Researchers concluded that lingual flange protrusion is a reliable and straightforward indicator for liver cancer in patients who have a malignant neoplasm.

You can find the full text of the study at this link.

Journal Reference:

Yinlu M, Xue Y, Cuihong Z, Rui C, Xiongzhi W. LINGUAL FLANGE PROTRUSION: DIAGNOSTIC MARKER FOR METASTATIC LIVER CANCER. Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine. 2017;37(6):782–788. DOI: 10.1016/S0254-6272(18)30041-4

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