Bilateral accessory parotid glands

Case contributed by Dr Narayanan Ramakrishna

Presentation

Incidental finding in a 55-year-old female, who was being evaluated for headache.

Patient Data

Age: 55
Gender: Female
Modality: CT

Bilateral accessory parotid glands are seen lateral to the masseter muscles which are both anterior and separate from the main parotid glands.

The CT attenuation is similar to the main parotid glands.

Modality: Annotated image

Bilateral accessory parotid glands (white arrows) are seen lateral to the masseter muscles and both anterior and separate from the main parotid glands (white stars).

Note the CT attenuation is similar to the main parotid glands.

Case Discussion

An accessory parotid gland is defined as salivary tissue that is separate from the main parotid gland, overlying the masseter muscle and in front of the Stensen's duct. 1 Accessory parotid glands are a common variation and can be observed incidentally. The incidence according to one study was 21%.2

Accessory parotid glands on CT or MRI show similar density or signal intensity as the main parotid gland as seen in our case.

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Case Information

rID: 31151
Case created: 21st Sep 2014
Last edited: 11th Dec 2015
System: Head & Neck
Inclusion in quiz mode: Excluded

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