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Mucoepidermoid Carcinoma : Low-grade

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Mucoepidermoid carcinoma (MEC) is the most common malignant salivary gland tumor and it is the 2nd most common among all salivary gland tumors (pleomorphic adenoma being the most common). It makes up about 30% of all malignant salivary gland tumors and about 10% to 15% of all salivary gland tumors. It is slightly more common in women and the age range is 3rd to 7th decades with a mean in the 5th decade of life. Parotid gland is the most frequently involved major salivary gland (half of all cases). The most common minor salivary gland site is the palate. Rare locations include sinonasal tract and nasopharynx.

Low-grade tumors present as a slow-growing painless mass. They are well-circumscribed with solid and cystic areas filled with mucin (as shown here). The tumors contain four cell types: mucin-producing, squamous, intermediate, and clear. Mucin-producing cells are the predominant cell type in low-grade MEC. Image courtesy of Dr. Jean-Christophe Fournet, Paris, France; humpath.com; Used with permission

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