Man Overcomes Parotid Gland Cancer Thanks To Early Detection From Wife

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Babak Larian, MD, FACS, and Director of the CENTER for Advanced Parotid Surgery in Los Angles comments on a recent article profiling a man unsuspectingly diagnosed with a parotid tumor and talks about the importance of seeking early medical attention for disorders relating to the parotid gland.

Babak Larian

Babak Larian, MD, FACS

The earlier parotid gland cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat, the more likely to be able to save the facial nerve, and more successful outcomes are usually seen.

Julie DiNardo, a registered dental hygienist, was eating breakfast with her husband when she something caught her eye—his facial symmetry was not what it used to be. Recognizing that her husband had seemed a bit off, Julie utilized her years of working as an oral cancer screener to feel his neck and face for any signs of a tumor. When she began to feel along her husband’s jawline and underneath his right ear, Julie knew she had come across something abnormal. After her husband visited a doctor, he was diagnosed with parotid gland cancer.

Babak Larian, MD, FACS, and expert parotid cancer surgeon in California believes that detecting the tumor early played a vital role in a successful outcome for Julie and her husband.

“The earlier parotid gland cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat, the more likely to be able to save the facial nerve, and more successful outcomes are usually seen,” said Dr. Larian, board certified head and neck surgeon in California.

In the case of Julie and her husband, Pino, Julie understood the warning signs and symptoms of head and neck cancer as she was able to detect what was believed to be an abnormal gland through a physical examination. According to Dr. Larian, becoming aware of the signs of oral tumors is extremely important for individuals who have a family history or have suffered from head and neckcancer in the past.

“Even though parotid gland cancer doesn’t always present the same symptoms for every person, most often the individual may feel a lump below the ear and near the jawline, and occasionally experience pain or numbness in the face. Like Pino, noticeable facial asymmetry is also a tell-tale sign that a parotid tumor could be present,” said Babak Larian, MD, FACS.

At the CENTER for Advanced Parotid Surgery in Los Angeles, Dr. Larian removes both cancerous and benign parotid tumors through a procedure known as a micro-parotidectomy, a minimally invasive approach that brings less trauma to the face and results in nominal scarring. Because the facial nerve often runs through the parotid gland and parotid tumors, Dr. Larian takes a team approach involving a facial plastic & reconstructive surgeon at the same time to reconstruct the surgery site and ensure optimal outcomes for his patients.

“To make sure my patients always receive the best care, I perform all parotid gland surgeries with the help of an expert facial nerve specialist who monitors the nerves function during the procedure. This guarantees that my patient will recovery properly and without any additional harm,” said expert California parotid surgeon Dr. Larian.

Dr. Babak Larian is a board-certified diplomat of the American Board of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery, and a Fellow of both the American College of Surgeons and the American Head and Neck Society. He has considerable expertise in minimally invasive surgical approaches relating to theparotid and salivary glands which has made him one of the most sought-after physicians in the industry. Dr. Larian currently holds the prestigious position of Chief of Head & Neck Surgery at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles.

For more information about undergoing parotid gland tumor removal, please contact the CENTER for Advanced Parotid Surgery by calling (310) 461-0300 or visit:

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