Pichi, B., Manciocco, V., Marchesi, P. et al. Dysphagia (2008) 23: 202. doi:10.1007/s00455-007-9125-0
Rhabdomyoma is an exceedingly rare soft tissue benign tumor of skeletal muscle origin classified into cardiac and extracardiac types based on location. Extracardiac rhabdomyoma is further classified into adult, genital, and fetal type depending on the degree of differentiation. Adult rhabdomyomas are rare, but morphologically characteristic, benign mesenchymal tumors with mature skeletal muscle differentiation that in 90% of cases arise in the head and neck region, mainly in the mucosa of the oropharynx, nasopharynx, and larynx, from the branchial musculature of third and fourth branchial arches. Most patients are between 40 and 70 years old, with a mean age of 60 years with a male predominance. Usually presenting symptoms include upper airway obstruction, Eustachian tube dysfunction, and mucosal or neck mass, but rarely does it arise as pure dysphagia. This article presents a case of parapharyngeal rhabdomyoma presenting with only progressive dysphagia.