To the uninitiated, the successful treatment of early, superficial carcinoma of the external ear may seem a comparatively simple matter; but after one has acquired a little experience in combating even the milder type of the disorder in this region, a pessimistic attitude generally replaces the former optimistic one.
The difficulty of bringing about a cure in these cases is largely due to the fact that the skin lies very close to the cartilage; and even if the latter escapes direct cancerous involvement, the chronic inflammatory changes to which it is subjected, together with the poor blood supply, prevent prompt healing, even after the removal of the parent cause of the trouble.
During the past two years, I have had opportunity to study seventeen cases of carcinoma of the ear. All the patients were men. The youngest was 28, the oldest 81 years of age. In five cases studied microscopically,