Inoperable Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma of Trachea: Complete Remission after Multi-modality Treatment

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WL Chan, VHF Lee, SWK Siu, TW Leung

Hong Kong J Radiol 2014;17:203-7

DOI: 10.12809/hkjr1413202

Adenoid cystic carcinoma is a malignant tumour commonly originating from the salivary glands, but can rarely arise from the upper airway and be life threatening when the central airway is compromised. While surgical resection is considered the definitive treatment, adenoid cystic carcinoma of the airway is frequently unresectable for a variety of reasons including tumour size, location, local extension, or patient comorbidities. There is no consensus on the best treatment for locally advanced inoperable adenoid cystic carcinoma of trachea. This case report describes a 32-year-old woman with inoperable adenoid cystic carcinoma of trachea successfully managed in our institution using a multimodality approach: endoscopic stenting followed by 3-dimensional conformal radical radiotherapy. Previous literature on the management of this rare disease is also reviewed.