Evaluation of Cervical Lymphadenopathy and Neck Masses
Evaluation of cervical lymphadenopathy and neck masses begins with the medical history of the patient and a physical exam. Often further workup can include CT scan of the neck, ultrasound of the neck or thyroid, lab work, or fine needle biopsy. If diagnosis is still unknown, may require an excisional lymphnode biopsy.
FNA (Fine Needle Aspiration) of Neck Masses
Fine needle aspiration (FNA) of neck masses is a biopsy procedure. This type of procedure is typically performed when cancer is a possible diagnosis. The procedure itself involved a thin needle attached to a syringe which is then inserted into the skin; the FNA takes less than 10 minutes. After the procedure, patients may find the biopsy site to be swollen or painful. There are usually no complications with this procedure, but minor bleeding, bruising and infection can occur in rare cases.
Parotid Gland Masses
Parotid gland masses are masses in the parotid gland (largest salivary glands). Symptoms of parotid gland masses typically include painless lump in the parotid gland. Sometimes the lump can be painful but typically not. It can sometimes cause difficulty opening and closing the mouth if it is a deep tumor. If patient also has facial paralysis on the same side, this significantly increases the likelihood that the tumor is cancerous. Typically, an FNA (fine needle aspiration) is performed to determine whether or not the mass is cancerous or not. Not all parotid tumors are cancer. Treatment depends on whether or not the lesion is benign or malignant (cancer). Typically treatment includes surgical excision of the mass (parotidectomy). If it is cancerous, then typically will also perform a neck dissection, where the lymph nodes where the cancer is likely to have spread are removed as well. Sometimes after the patient recovers from surgery, they will undergo radiation therapy depending on the type of cancer.
Submandibular Gland Masses
Submandibular gland masses are masses that are a part of the major salivary glands. More than half off all tumors that arise in the submandibular gland are found to be cancerous. Treatment includes surgery to remove the gland as well as regional lymph nodes associated with the gland.
Call Waco Ear, Nose & Throat at (254) 776-7744 for more information or to schedule an appointment.