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Tonsillar Small Cell Carcinoma: Potential Contribution of Human Papillomavirus

Roger A. Fecher, Brittany A. Leader, Yash Patil, Randall Butler

(Medical Scientist Training Program, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, OH, USA)

Am J Case Rep 2018; 19:482-485

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.908252

BACKGROUND: Extrapulmonary small cell carcinoma (SmCC) is a relatively rare clinical entity constituting only 2.5–5% of SmCCs. Recently, evidence has emerged that high-risk types of human papillomavirus (HPV) might play an etiologic role in oropharyngeal SmCC, similar to squamous cell carcinoma.
CASE REPORT: Here, we present a case of tonsillar SmCC that presented as combined SmCC-squamous cell carcinoma in a cervical lymph node, raising the possibility that the SmCC-component represents disease progression.
CONCLUSIONS: This case lends further support to the importance of HPV in the development of oropharyngeal SmCC and suggests a mechanism of disease progression.

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