Oropharyngeal adenoid cystic carcinoma invading the mandibular bone through the mandibular foramen
Adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC) is a rare epithelial tumor of the head and neck region, and one of the most common malignant tumors of the salivary glands. ACC is a slow-growing tumor characterized by perineural invasion and often has a high-recurrence rate. We describe a case of oropharyngeal ACC invading the mandibular bone through the mandibular foramen that showed a rare pattern of origin and invasion. A 70-year-old woman complained of noise and pain around the right temporomandibular joint. Osteomyelitis was suspected on the initial imaging examinations, although the findings were slightly atypical. However, a mass was observed in the right oropharyngeal wall on subsequent imaging examinations, and mandibular bone invasion, rather than osteomyelitis, was additionally suspected. The mass in the right oropharyngeal wall and right mandible was surgically excised. On postoperative histopathological examination, the mass was finally diagnosed as ACC. As tumor cells were also observed around the inferior alveolar nerve, mandibular bone invasion through the mandibular foramen was suspected. An oropharyngeal ACC invading the mandibular bone through the mandibular foramen is extremely rare. The present case suggests that bone invasion should be considered carefully with several imaging examinations when a malignant tumor such as ACC is observed around the jaw bone.
Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11282-018-0359-3