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Clinical Note
August 18, 2008

Multiple Adult Rhabdomyomas of the Oropharynx, Base of the Tongue, and Floor of the MouthMagnetic Resonance Findings

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: Department of Radiology, Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, New York.

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2008;134(8):892-894. doi:10.1001/archotol.134.8.892

Adult rhabdomyomas of the head and neck are uncommon, benign neoplasms that usually present as asymptomatic solitary lesions in the oral cavity, pharynx, or larynx. Rarely do rhabdomyomas occur in multiple sites. We describe the magnetic resonance (MR) imaging appearance of multiple adult rhabdomyomas synchronously involving the floor of the mouth, base of the tongue, and oropharynx in a 70-year-old man.

Rhabdomyomas are rare, benign lesions that account for only 2% of all primary skeletal muscle neoplasms.1 They usually involve the myocardium and, based on histology, are divided into fetal and adult forms. Ninety percent of extracardiac tumors occur in the head and neck.1 Whether all rhabdomyomas are true neoplasms or hamartomas is not clear, but some studies have suggested that the adult form is a true neoplasm. Approximately 3% to 10% of adult rhabdomyomas may be multiple and either synchronous or metachronous. By comparison, fetal rhabdomyomas are almost always solitary lesions. To our knowledge, this is the first MR imaging description of a case of adult rhabdomyomas synchronously involving 3 separate locations in the head and neck.

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