Salivary gland disorders include inflammatory, bacterial, viral and neoplastic causes.
The presentation can be acute, recurrent, or chronic.
Acute suppurative sialadenitis presents as rapid-onset pain and swelling and is treated with antibiotics, salivary massage,
hydration and sialagogues (agents that increase the secretion of saliva) such as lemon drops or vitamin C lozenges.
Viral causes include mumps and Human Immunodeficiency Virus and treatment is directed at the underlying disease.
Recurrent or chronic sialadenitis is more likely to be inflammatory than infectious; examples include recurrent parotitis of
childhood and sialolithiasis (salivary stones).
Inflammation is commonly caused by an obstruction such as a stone or duct stricture. Management is directed at relieving
Benign and malignant tumours can occur in the salivary glands and usually present as a painless solitary neck mass.
Diagnosis is made by imaging (e.g., ultrasonography, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging) and biopsy
(initially with fine-needle aspiration). Overall, most salivary gland tumors are benign and can be treated with surgical excision.
|Last Updated 2nd January 2020
|Diagram showing the major salivary glands (parotid, sub-mandibular & sub-lingual glands)
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