Scanning Microscopy


Specimens taken at surgery from 15 patients with carcinoma of the esophagus were examined with scanning electron microscopy. Nine patients were treated with chemotherapy (cisplatin + 5-fluorouracil), surgery and radiotherapy; one received preoperative radiotherapy only; and the remaining five primary surgery only. Scanning electron microscopy was performed on specimens of both tumor tissue and the mucosa at least 5 cm from the tumor. In adjacent non-tumor tissue, damage due to treatment was observed in the form of changes in microridges and increased cell loss. In tumor tissue, the degree of damage was correlated to tumor response to treatment. For patients with no residual tumor after treatment, the ultrastructure was normalized with a low tumor score, while for patients with residual tumor, the score was high.

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