Adenoid cystic carcinoma of the salivary glands is the second most common malignancy involving the minor salivary glands behind mucoepidermoid carcinoma and the second most common malignancy involving the parotid gland.
Adenoid cystic carcinomas arise more commonly in the minor salivary glands (~55%) than in the major salivary glands. They are the most common sinonasal tumors of salivary origin. They are locally aggressive with a propensity for perineural spread 5.
Generally, a distinction is made radiologically between low-grade and high-grade adenoid cystic carcinomas. Low-grade tumors tend to be well-defined, in contradistinction to high-grade tumors, which appear infiltrative. However, both subtypes are usually homogeneously enhancing after contrast administration.
- T1: hypo- to isointense
- T2: slightly hyperintense, with higher grades being markedly hypointense 6
- T1 C+ (Gd): homogeneous enhancement
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- 6. Ji-Young Song. Adenoid cystic carcinoma of the sublingual gland: A case report. (2016) Imaging Science in Dentistry. 46 (4): 291. doi:10.5624/isd.2016.46.4.291