Diagnostic Utility of Neutrophil - Lymphocyte Ratio in Head and Neck Cancers

Author(s): Sridhar Reddy Erugula1 , Divya Jahagirdar2 , Swetha Meruva3 , Gude Venkata Naga Sai Pratap4 , Chillamcherla Dhanalakshmi Srija5 , Anushka Pattnaik6

BACKGROUND The ratio between the serum neutrophil count and the serum lymphocyte count is termed as Neutrophil to Lymphocyte Ratio (NLR). It is considered to be an individualistic prognostic indicator in hepatocellular carcinoma, colorectal carcinoma and various ovarian tumours. We wanted to assess the Neutrophil???to??? Lymphocyte Ratio (NLR) in the head and neck cancer patients and compare it with those of normal subjects. METHODS This is a prospective study involving two cohorts i.e. 1) patients of head and neck cancers and 2) healthy normal subjects of the same age group. Total study duration was 3 years and the study sample included 49 patients and 49 healthy subjects. RESULTS Results of the present study showed that the Neutrophil-to-Lymphocyte Ratio (NLR) of histopathologically proven cases of Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the oral cavity (OSCC) showed a significantly higher median of 2.9 (p < 0.001) compared to the NLR in normal (control) individuals. CONCLUSIONS NLR may be helpful in identifying patients with adverse tumour biology as it is a feasible, cost-effective, and potential biomarker.