The acinic cell tumor of salivary gland origin, once thought to be benign, is now known to be an incidiously slow growing malignant neoplasm with lethal potential. While the degree of malignant behavior of individual acinic cell tumors is notably variable, all must be treated with aggression. Traditional and current methods of treatment are reviewed; and, in conjunction with the tumors herein reported, guidelines for management of this uncommon malignancy are suggested. Four cases have been reviewed in detail and critically analyzed. The pathology, including features of both light and electron microscopy, is included–particularly in relation to the oncocytoid areas identified in from 10% to 40% of the parenchymal cells of our tumors. Since an accurate histopathologic diagnosis is the first step in the establishment of a proper treatment plan, pitfalls in histologic diagnosis have been stressed.
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