Major and minor salivary glands tumours

Lisa Licitra, Cesare Grandi, Franz Josef Prott, Jan H. Schornagel, Paulo Bruzzi, Roberto Molinari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Malignant salivary gland tumours are rare. The most common tumour site is the parotid. Aetiologic factors are not clear. Nutrition may be a risk factor, as well as irradiation or an histologically benign tumour occurred at a young age. Painless swelling of a salivary gland should always be considered as suspicious, especially if no sign of inflammation is present. Signs and symptoms related to major salivary gland tumours differ from those concerning minor salivary gland tumours, as they depend on the different location of the salivary gland. Surgical excision represents the standard option in the treatment of resectable tumours of both major and minor salivary glands. Neutron radiation may be a treatment option for inoperable locoregional disease. Surgery, irradiation or re-irradiation are treatment options for local relapse, whereas radical neck dissection is indicated for regional relapses. Metastastic disease may be either treated with radiotherapy or palliative chemotherapy, depending on the site of metastases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-225
Number of pages11
JournalCritical Reviews in Oncology/Hematology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2003


  • Carcinomas
  • Salivary glands
  • Tumours

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Hematology
  • Oncology


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