The contemporary management of cancers of the sinonasal tract in adults

CA Cancer J Clin. 2023 Jan;73(1):72-112. doi: 10.3322/caac.21752. Epub 2022 Aug 2.


Sinonasal malignancies make up <5% of all head and neck neoplasms, with an incidence of 0.5-1.0 per 100,000. The outcome of these rare malignancies has been poor, whereas significant progress has been made in the management of other cancers. The objective of the current review was to describe the incidence, causes, presentation, diagnosis, treatment, and recent developments of malignancies of the sinonasal tract. The diagnoses covered in this review included sinonasal undifferentiated carcinoma, sinonasal adenocarcinoma, sinonasal squamous cell carcinoma, and esthesioneuroblastoma, which are exclusive to the sinonasal tract. In addition, the authors covered malignances that are likely to be encountered in the sinonasal tract-primary mucosal melanoma, NUT (nuclear protein of the testis) carcinoma, and extranodal natural killer cell/T-cell lymphoma. For the purpose of keeping this review as concise and focused as possible, sarcomas and malignancies that can be classified as salivary gland neoplasms were excluded.

Keywords: head and neck neoplasms; paranasal sinus neoplasms; rare diseases; sinonasal carcinoma.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Carcinoma* / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Maxillary Sinus Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Maxillary Sinus Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Melanoma*
  • Nasal Cavity / pathology
  • Nose Neoplasms* / diagnosis
  • Nose Neoplasms* / epidemiology
  • Nose Neoplasms* / therapy
  • Paranasal Sinuses* / pathology


  • NUTM1 protein, human