Epithelial-myoepithelial carcinoma of the tongue base: a case for the case-report and review of the literature

Head Neck Oncol. 2010 Feb 2;2:4. doi: 10.1186/1758-3284-2-4.


A 60 year old lady was referred to the Princess Alexandra Hospital (Brisbane, Queensland, Australia) tertiary Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Unit from a peripheral hospital for investigation and management of a tumour at the base of the tongue. Biopsy of the tumour revealed it to be an epithelial-myoepithelial carcinoma of the base of the tongue. This is an extremely rare tumour in this location with only 2 other case reports in the world literature: the patients were treated with chemo-radiotherapy and surgery respectively. Our patient was made aware of the world literature and was able to make a fully informed decision on her choice of treatment modality and was treated with radiotherapy. Increasingly journals are limiting publication of case reports to "world firsts" only. We present a case where such a policy would have denied patient choice and possibly led to detrimental treatment.We review the world literature of tongue base epithelial-myoepithelial carcinoma of the tongue.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy
  • Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Tongue / pathology
  • Tongue Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Tongue Neoplasms / radiotherapy