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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Schwannoma (Neurilemmoma) on the Base of the Tongue: A Rare Clinical Case

Rare disease, Educational Purpose (only if useful for a systematic review or synthesis)

Steffi Sharma, Guruprasad Rai

India Kasturba Medical College, Manipal University, Manipal, India

Am J Case Rep 2016; 17:203-206

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.897063

Available online: 2016-03-28

Published: 2016-03-28


BACKGROUND: Schwannomas are slow-growing benign tumors. They can arise from any peripheral nerve, including the cranial nerves (except the olfactory and optic nerves), spinal nerves, and autonomic nerves. Schwannomas of the head and neck account for 25–40% of all cases. However, intra-oral schwannomas account for only 1% of all head and neck tumors. Complete surgical excision is the treatment of choice. Malignant transformation and recurrence following this treatment are rare.
CASE REPORT: A 20-year-old woman presented with a slow-growing mass over the back of her tongue first noticed 8 months before. Examination of the oral cavity exposed a 4×4 cm mass over the posterior aspect of the tongue. The remaining oral cavity examination was normal, with no cervical lymph node enlargement. The patient underwent excisional biopsy by the trans-oral approach under general anesthesia. Histopathological reports discovered features of schwannoma. The patient was followed up for 1 year; she had an uneventful recovery and no evidence of recurrence. We report a case of schwannoma over the base of the tongue, a rare location for this type of tumor.
CONCLUSIONS: In this article we report a case of schwannoma over the base of the tongue. Despite the rarity of this condition, physicians should consider schwannoma as a differential diagnosis for a mass over the tongue, as there can be a favorable outcome and prognosis for the patient when this condition is correctly identified.

Keywords: Neurilemmoma - surgery, Rare Diseases, Tongue Neoplasms - surgery, young adult