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Clinical Problem Solving: Radiology
July 2011

Radiology Quiz Case 2: Diagnosis

Author Affiliations


Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2011;137(7):721. doi:10.1001/archoto.2011.96-b

Diagnosis: Cervical foregut duplication cyst

The embyological foregut is the portion of the alimentary canal that extends from the pharynx to the duodeunum and the hepatobiliary tree. Foregut duplications are rare congenital anomalies that can occur at any point along the embyological foregut. They represent about one-third of alimentary tract duplications, with an overall incidence of only 1 in 13 000.1 They are usually asymptomatic cysts and most commonly occur in the abdomen or the thorax. They are rarely identified in the head and neck region. Of those found in the head and neck, most are associated with the tongue.2 To be considered an alimentary tract duplication, the cyst must typically meet 3 criteria: (1) the presence of a well-developed coat of smooth muscle; (2) an epithelial lining of some portion of the alimentary tract; and (3) an attachment to some portion of the gastrointestinal tract.1

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