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February 26, 1973

Retropharyngeal Parathyroid Adenoma

Author Affiliations

Jersey City Medical Center Jersey City, NJ

JAMA. 1973;223(9):1040. doi:10.1001/jama.1973.03220090060019

To the Editor.—  The patient described below had the rare finding of a parathyroid adenoma with hemorrhage presenting as a retropharyngeal mass. The clinical picture, with fever and leukocytosis, suggested the diagnosis of a retropharyngeal abscess.

Report of a Case.—  A 50-year-old obese woman was admitted to the Memphis Naval Hospital with a three-day history of increasing dysphagia. For the 36 hours prior to admission the patient had been unable to swallow her own secretions and had taken nothing by mouth. The patient denied trauma or ingestion of a foreign body. There was no pertinent medical history. The temperature was 38.6 C. Generalized cervical swelling with mild tenderness in each supraclavicular area was present, and there was a mild right otitis externa. The throat showed ecchymosis of the posterior pharynx, without fluctuation.The white blood cell count was 15,400/cu mm, with 78% neutrophils, 20% lymphocytes, and 2% monocytes. The calcium