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August 1960

Cancer of the Pyriform Sinus

Author Affiliations

Rochester, Minn.
Fellow in Surgery, Mayo Foundation (Dr. Brown); Section of Plastic Surgery, Mayo Clinic and Mayo Foundation (Dr. Devine). The Mayo Foundation, Rochester, Minn., is a part of the Graduate School of the University of Minnesota.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1960;72(2):192-193. doi:10.1001/archotol.1960.00740010197007

The pyriform sinus is located in a posterolateral position in relation to the larynx. It is part of the pharynx. Anatomically, its borders are the thyroid cartilage and thyrohyoid membrane laterally, and the cricoid cartilage and aryepiglottic fold medially. Its superior limits are the free edge of the aryepiglottic fold and glossoepiglottic fold. Posteriorly and inferiorly, the sinus opens into the esophagus. These sinuses act as lateral channels for the passage of the boluses of food. The lateral1 channel of either side is utilized predominantly by individual subjects; that is, a person may be predominantly a "right-sided or left-sided swallower."

Cancer of the pyriform sinus is usually referred to in relation to the larger problem of cancer of the larynx.2 In a series of 602 cancers of the larynx and laryngopharynx seen at the Mayo Clinic in the five-year period 1945 through 1949, 4.1% were considered to be