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Laryngoscope. 2015 Jan;125(1):122-7. doi: 10.1002/lary.24837. Epub 2014 Jul 14.

Evolution and changing trends in surgery for benign parotid tumors.

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Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Erlangen, Germany.



The ideal extent of surgical intervention for benign parotid tumors remains a matter of controversy. The aim of the study was to trace the development of surgical therapy in a large cohort, explore its changes in a single institution specializing in salivary gland pathologies over the last 12 years, and determine the extent to which a possible shift in the surgical therapy of parotid benign tumors toward less radical methods was correlated with a change in the incidence of facial palsy and Frey's syndrome.


Retrospective clinical study.


A retrospective evaluation of the records for all patients treated for benign parotid tumors between 2000 and 2012 at a tertiary referral center was carried out. Surgical methods were classified into four groups: extracapsular dissection, partial superficial parotidectomy, superficial parotidectomy, and complete parotidectomy.


A total of 1,624 patients were included in the study. Our analysis demonstrated an increase in the total number of parotidectomies for benign lesions from 71 (2000) to 184 (2012), mostly due to the increase in extracapsular dissections (from 9 to 123). Increased performance of less radical surgery was associated with a significantly decreased incidence of temporary and permanent facial palsies (from 22.8% to 9% and 9.8% to 5.9%, respectively) and Frey's syndrome (from 11.3% to 1.6%).


One of the most controversial issues in the treatment of benign parotid tumors is the best therapeutic approach to be taken in such patients. Our study showed that increased performance of less radical surgery was associated with better functional outcomes.


Frey's syndrome; Parotid gland; benign tumors; extracapsular dissection; facial palsy; partial parotidectomy

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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