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Meet Dr. Larian

Dr. Babak Larian, the Chairman and Director of the CENTER for Advanced Parotid Surgery in Los Angeles, is a highly experienced and reputable board-certified surgeon...
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  • 6 Little-Known Facts About Parotid Tumors 6 Little-Known Facts About Parotid Tumors
    While you may be more familiar with the term “salivary glands” than “parotid glands,” parotid tumors are the most common types of salivary gland tumors. Read more >
  • Cell Phone Use May Lead to a Search for the Best Parotid Gland Surgeon All About a Parotid Tumor
    A parotid tumor is not a commonly discussed medical condition, but do you know what to do if you find a mass on the side of the face? Could it be a tumor? Could it be cancerous? Read more >
  • Why Wouldn’t the Parotid Gland Function Properly? Why Wouldn’t the Parotid Gland Function Properly?
    On a daily basis, most people aren’t aware of whether or not their parotid gland is functioning properly. However, there are a number of parotid gland disorders that bring salivary gland health to an individual’s attention. Read more >

Parotid Gland Cancer

Cancer in the salivary glands is rare, but when it does occur it most often starts in the parotid glands. The parotid glands are the largest salivary glands, located in front of the ears on either side of the face. When tumors occur in the parotid glands, they are removed in a procedure called a parotidectomy. Dr. Babak Larian and his team at the CENTER for Advanced Parotid Surgery are experts at removing parotid gland cancer through minimally invasive surgery.

Diagnosing Parotid Cancer

There are several risk factors that can increase one’s chance of developing salivary gland cancer. Age, exposure to radiation of the head and neck can all increase one’s odds of developing parotid cancer.

Sometimes patients with parotid cancer do not experience symptoms; rather the cancer is discovered during a physical or dental exam. When symptoms do occur, they may include:

  • Fluid draining from ear
  • Facial pain
  • Lump in area
  • Facial paralysis

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention right away. Diagnosing parotid cancer involves several types of exams and imaging tests. The doctor will usually begin with a physical exam of the head and neck. If a tumor is suspected or a lump is found during the physical examination, the doctor will likely order an imaging test. MRI is the imaging study of choice.

If an imaging test does reveal a salivary gland tumor, a fine needle aspiration biopsy will be performed. This procedure involves removing a small amount of  tissue from the tumor using a very fine needle. The sample will then be reviewed by a pathologist to determine whether or not the cells are cancerous.

Treating Parotid Gland Cancer

Anyone with parotid gland cancer should seek treatment from a salivary gland specialist. At the CENTER for Advanced Parotid Surgery in Los Angeles, Dr. Babak Larian specializes in minimally invasive surgical techniques. Using a small incision and endoscopic technology, Dr. Larian can remove the cancerous parotid gland. He always performs the micro-parotidectomy procedure with world-renowned facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon Babak Azizzadeh, MD, FACS. This partnership ensures that the facial nerve is not harmed during parotid removal and that the resulting scar is minimal. Not all types of cancers are amenable to a minimally invasive procedure; at the time of consultation Dr. Larian will asses the best treatment course.

Contact the CENTER for a Parotid Gland Consultation Today!

If you have a salivary gland tumor, or think you may have a parotid gland problem, it is crucial to seek treatment from an expert. When it comes to diagnosing parotid cancer, and treating the cancer with minimally invasive procedures, Dr. Larian and his team offer top-notch care. To schedule a consultation with the parotid gland experts, call the CENTER for Advanced Parotid Surgery in Los Angeles at (310) 461-0300 today!

To learn more about diagnosing parotid cancer, contact our office.

Next, read Parotid PMG & Your Health.


Request your consultation with Dr. Larian today.
Call us at 310.997.2409 to schedule an appointment or

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Chief of Head & Neck Surgery at Cedars-Sinai
Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery at UCLA