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June 1959

Olfactory Neuroepithelioma (Neuroblastoma)

Author Affiliations

From the Laboratories of the Presbyterian Hospital.

AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1959;69(6):724-728. doi:10.1001/archotol.1959.00730030738012

The nasal fossa is well supplied with neuroepithelial tissue. Neurogenic tumors of this area are rather uncommon, however, and with the exclusion of benign nasal polyps, are estimated to comprise about 3% of all intranasal tumors.1 One group of such neoplasms forms rather undifferentiated neuroectodermal tissue in histologic patterns similar to those observed in tumors of sympathetic ganglia and the adrenal medulla. Such neoplasms are usually obstructive and locally invasive. Because of their relatively anaplastic nature, they may sometimes be mistaken for undifferentiated epidermoid or adenocarcinoma, lymphosarcoma or malignant melanoma. The preferred generic term for these tumors is olfactory neuroepithelioma.

All early reports of this entity were confined to the European literature. It was first described in France in 1924 by Berger, Luc, and Richard, who noted such a lesion in a middle-aged man. They applied the name ésthesioneuroépithéliome olfactif, and mentioned as characteristic features sheets of small rounds