Natural history of patients with recurrent parotitis and punctate sialectasis

Br J Surg. 1986 Sep;73(9):745-8. doi: 10.1002/bjs.1800730922.


The clinical features of 68 patients (26 children and 42 adults) who suffered recurrent attacks of parotitis and in whom sialography had revealed punctate sialectasis of the affected gland is described. The sex incidence was equal in those patients in whom symptoms commenced during childhood (younger than 15). When symptoms commenced later in life, however, there was a marked preponderance of females (female:male = 7.5:1). Bilateral sialography in 16 patients with unilateral symptoms revealed punctate sialectasis in the asymptomatic gland in 11 (69 per cent) of patients. Neither the presence of the sicca syndrome nor auto-antibodies had a significant predictive value as to the outcome of the disease. Five-year follow-up of 52 patients revealed that 56 per cent of adults and 64 per cent of children had shown spontaneous improvement of symptoms with symptomatic treatment alone. In 40 per cent of adults and 4 per cent of children, however, the persistence or worsening of symptoms necessitated parotidectomy. We believe that these results of conservative management indicate that, at least in the first instance and particularly in children, conservative management is justified and that the use of radiotherapy or steroids (with their attendant morbidity) is unnecessary.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Autoantibodies / analysis
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Dilatation, Pathologic
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parotid Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Parotid Diseases / pathology*
  • Parotid Gland / diagnostic imaging
  • Parotid Gland / pathology*
  • Parotitis / diagnostic imaging
  • Parotitis / immunology
  • Parotitis / therapy*
  • Recurrence
  • Sialography


  • Autoantibodies