Sebaceous carcinoma of the head and neck. Case report and literature review

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1992 Nov;118(11):1245-9. doi: 10.1001/archotol.1992.01880110113020.


Sebaceous carcinoma is uncommon, with fewer than 400 cases reported. Usually, lesions arise in the meibomian glands of the eyelid; however, extraocular lesions within the head and neck have been reported. Regardless of the location, sebaceous malignancies must be considered aggressive neoplasms with a potential for regional and distant metastasis. Diagnosis may be difficult, given the low incidence and inconsistencies in histopathologic classification. Recently, needle aspiration cytologic characteristics have been delineated, with this procedure becoming increasingly useful in establishing the diagnosis. Treatment requires wide surgical excision with removal of involved regional lymph nodes. Opinions are divided regarding the use of postoperative irradiation or chemotherapy. Records of all patients with sebaceous carcinoma of the head and neck treated at UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, over the last 35 years were reviewed. The clinical and pathologic features are discussed, and the literature is summarized.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology*
  • Aged
  • Head and Neck Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sebaceous Gland Neoplasms / pathology*