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Head Neck. 2007 Nov;29(11):1055-60.

Cervical lipoblastoma: case report, review of literature, and genetic analysis.

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  • 1Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Massachusetts, USA.



Lipoblastoma is a rare, benign tumor of infants and children, usually occurring in the extremities and trunk, with only a few cases reported in the neck.


We describe the case of an infant with a rapidly enlarging, painless neck mass. MRI revealed a 4-cm-diameter mass deep to the paraspinal muscles, in close proximity to the C2 vertebral foramen. Review of literature, diagnostic methods, and genetics of lipomatous tumors are discussed.


Complete surgical excision via a posterior cervical approach demonstrated irregular lobules of immature fat cells separated by a loose, myxoid connective tissue. Histology and genetic analysis confirmed the diagnosis of lipoblastoma.


Cervical lipoblastoma is rare, and typically presents as an asymptomatic, painless mass, rarely causing airway obstruction or nerve compression. MRI can be helpful in identifying the lipomatous nature of the mass, but the findings can be inconsistent due to variable maturity of fat cells and the mesenchymal content of the tumor. Chromosomal analysis is useful in differentiating lipoblastoma from liposarcoma. Recommended treatment is complete surgical excision.

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