Located in front of the ears, the parotid glands extend to the area beneath the earlobe along the angle of the jawbone. The parotid glands are the body’s largest salivary glands. As the largest salivary glands, the parotid glands are involved in saliva production to keep the mouth moist. Parotid glands present both functional and aesthetic consequences, due to the proximity of the facial nerve and the gland’s alignment with the contours of the jaw line and face.
Unfortunately, the parotid glands are highly susceptible to tumors, with a rate of 80% of salivary gland tumors being found within the parotid gland. Most parotid tumors are benign, with the minority of parotid gland tumors being potentially cancerous. Dr. Lee has carefully crafted her skill and knowledge of the exact structures of the face and neck, over the course of her medical career. That, combined with her care and dedication to her patients, makes her an expert in the field.
Parotid tumor treatment
Surgery is generally recommended for almost any parotid gland tumors, regardless of whether or not they are cancerous. Most tumors grow slowly and are non-cancerous. That being said, very often these tumors will continue to grow, and have the possibility of becoming cancerous in the future. If dealing with cancerous tumors, you may require additional treatment beyond surgery.
Before & After
Browse through Dr. Kimberly’s before and after photos, giving you a visual representation of her stunning results.
About the procedure
Ordinarily, treatment of a parotid tumor requires a procedure called a parotidectomy, in which the parotid gland is thoroughly removed. This surgery calls for a specialist, as the nerves controlling facial movement runs through the gland. Any damage done to the nerve can result in facial paralysis. Dr. Lee uses surgical techniques to preserve function of the facial nerve. Through the latest minimally invasive techniques, Dr. Lee is able to minimize any scarring or facial asymmetry, by making calculated placements of incisions, where any scars may be hidden within the skin creases around and behind the ear. Dr. Lee is committed to preserving the facial nerve and reconstructing the area so that you look as you did before the parotid tumor.
What’s more, Dr. Lee utilizes a unique procedure to reconstruct the parotid defect. This procedure was specifically designed to fill in the facial defect left behind after parotid tumor surgery. Because Dr. Lee uses specialized techniques during tumor removal, she is able to effectively restore symmetry and maintain fullness in the patient’s face.
Any risks associated with parotid surgery are in part determined by the anatomy of the parotid tumor. Great lengths are taken to ensure the protection the facial nerve, during surgery. Patients usually experience normal function of the facial nerve following their surgery. You may encounter some temporary weakness of the nerve, but this will usually resolve without the need for any additional treatment.
If you’re interested in further discussing your options for parotid surgery in Los Angeles, you can contact us online. Or if you prefer, you are welcome to call our office directly, and one of our staff members will be able to assist you in scheduling a consultation.