Middle ear carcinoid: an indolent tumor with metastatic potential.
BACKGROUND: Neuroendocrine tumors of the head and neck region may present problems in diagnosis. Middle ear carcinoid is a rare, recently recognized tumor, which to date has not been reported to metastasize. METHODS: We report the case of a 64-year-old man with a 9-year history of recurrent middle ear neoplasm and ipsilateral cervical lymphadenopathy. A microscopic parathyroid tumor was also identified. The approach to the diagnosis of this unusual combination is presented. RESULTS: The patient had a neuroendocrine tumor metastatic to multiple unilateral cervical lymph nodes, which was morphologically identical to his recurrent middle ear neoplasm. The neoplasm had the morphologic, immunohistochemical, and ultrastructural features of a carcinoid tumor. CONCLUSIONS: This case illustrates that middle ear carcinoids may metastasize. We suggest that immunohistochemical studies be performed on all biopsy specimens from neoplasms of the middle ear, as distinction from the more common paraganglioma may be difficult on morphologic grounds alone.
Mooney, EE; Dodd, LG; Oury, TD; Burchette, JL; Layfield, LJ; Scher, RL
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