Hepatocellular carcinoma, the most frequent primary hepatic tumor, metastasizes in more than 50% of cases. However, parotid gland metastatic HCCs are very uncommon. We report a patient in whom the finding of a left parotid mass revealed metastatic HCC.
PRESENTATION OF CASE
A thirty-six-year-old male presented with a round palpable left neck mass that persisted for 3 months. He had received right hemihepatectomy for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Preoperative evaluation revealed a benign tumor of the parotid gland. We performed superficial parotidectomy. Metastatic hepatocellular carcinoma of the parotid gland was diagnosed.
Although HCC metastases to the oral cavity have been reported, to date, only 4 cases HCC metastasis to the parotid gland have been reported. Although clinicians and cytopathologists alike both agree that salivary gland fine needle aspiration biopies (FNABs) are highly useful and safe diagnostic alternatives to biopsies and resections, we believe that in specific clinical situations, awareness of potential diagnostic pitfalls in salivary gland FNAB is a necessary part of the microscopic interpretations of these lesions.
Although rare, since HCC can metastasize to the parotid gland, high suspicion should be maintained in a patient presenting with a parotid mass with a history of HCC. In addition, since potential diagnostic pitfalls in salivary gland fine-needle aspiration (FNA) biopsies exist, incisional or excisional biopsy may be necessary for definite diagnosis of metastatic HCC to the parotid gland.