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Management of salivary gland malignancies in the pediatric population

Aro, Katria; Leivo, Ilmob; Mäkitie, Anttia

Current Opinion in Otolaryngology & Head and Neck Surgery: April 2014 - Volume 22 - Issue 2 - p 116–120
doi: 10.1097/MOO.0000000000000026
HEAD AND NECK ONCOLOGY: Edited by Piero Nicolai and Cesare Piazza

Purpose of review The management of pediatric salivary gland cancer (SGC) remains a challenge, and long-term outcome data are lacking for these rare tumors. The heterogeneity of histopathological features in 24 different SGCs further complicates unequivocal treatment recommendations across different age groups. This review aims to outline the management guidelines for pediatric SGC.

Recent findings Compared with adults, pediatric SGC is more often localized to the primary site and of low-grade histology. Surgery remains the treatment of choice accompanied by oncological treatment in selected patients. Elective neck dissection seems unnecessary as the occurrence of occult metastases is rare.

Summary This review provides information for clinicians to manage pediatric SGC highlighting the need for individually based treatment decisions at multidisciplinary head and neck centers.

aDepartment of Otorhinolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, Helsinki University Central Hospital and University of Helsinki, Helsinki

bDepartment of Pathology, University of Turku, Turku, Finland

Correspondence to Professor Antti Mäkitie, Department of Otorhinolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, Helsinki University Central Hospital, P.O. Box 220, FI-00029, HUCH, Helsinki, Finland. Tel: +358 50 428 6847; e-mail:

© 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins