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December 1958

Branchiogenic Carcinoma

Author Affiliations

From the Departments of Otolaryngology and Pathology at the Boston University School of Medicine and Massachusetts Memorial Hospitals.

AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1958;68(6):764-769. doi:10.1001/archotol.1958.00730020788017

The occurrence of malignant degeneration within the confines of branchial remnants has been the subject of discussion for many years. Formerly, the diagnosis of primary carcinoma of the neck, probably arising in branchial remnants, was not an unusual one. However, in retrospect, it has been found under close scrutiny that in very few of the cases in which the diagnosis of branchiogenic carcinoma had been made can the diagnosis be upheld.

The rarity of this condition has been emphasized by Martin,1 who has doubted if the diagnosis should ever be made. No tissue in the body is exempt from the possibility of malignant degeneration, and of course squamous epithelium and lymphoid follicles, both of which are found in branchial cysts, are notoriously prone to undergo neoplastic change. However, Martin feels that the only adequate proof of a true branchiogenic carcinoma can be the demonstration of cancer arising in the

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