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Case report
Nodular fasciitis of the parotid gland engulfing the facial nerve: a conservative approach
  1. Stephen Bennett,
  2. Kristian Hutson,
  3. Olakunle Ajayi and
  4. Andreas Hilger
  1. Department of Otolaryngology & Head and Neck Surgery, East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust, Ipswich, Suffolk, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Stephen Bennett; stevebennett{at}


Nodular fasciitis (NF) is a rapidly growing benign lesion rarely reported in the parotid gland. It shares cytological features with other benign and malignant parotid neoplasms and may be difficult to diagnose based on fine needle aspiration cytology alone. Given this diagnostic conundrum, surgical excision for histology is recommended to facilitate definitive diagnosis. A case with significant involvement of the facial nerve is described, which has not previously been reported in the literature. Despite features of potential malignancy, the decision was taken to biopsy the lesion and not proceed to complete excision in an attempt to reduce the risk of facial nerve injury. Expert opinion later diagnosed NF. Contrary to accepted practice, where diagnostic uncertainty remains around the malignant potential of a lesion, risks and benefits of complete excision versus a conservative approach should be carefully weighed especially when the facial nerve is involved and NF is a possible diagnosis.

  • ear, nose and throat/otolaryngology
  • head and neck surgery
  • surgical oncology
  • head and neck cancer

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  • Contributors AH and OA were responsible for the surgical management of the case and review of the case report. KH was responsible for review and editing of the case report. SB wrote the case report.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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