Recurrence following parotidectomy for pleomorphic adenoma is attributed to spillage, inadequate resection, or multicentric foci. Consequently, an adequate envelope of normal parotid tissue must be included with the tumor. This concept has prompted many surgeons to perform a complete superficial parotidectomy for a lateral lobe tumor. However, this very concept is violated when the tumor abuts the facial nerve or when a dumbbell-shaped tumor extends behind the mandibular ramus.
Shemen LJ. Conservative vs Superficial Parotidectomy. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1999;125(10):1166. doi:10.1001/archotol.125.10.1166