Skip to main content


Log in

Spontaneous Retropharyngeal Hematoma of a Parathyroid Cyst: Report of a Case

  • Case Reports
  • Published:
Surgery Today Aims and scope Submit manuscript


A 41-year-old woman presented with severe and sudden anterior neck swelling, pain, and dysphagia. Computed tomography (CT) scan and ultrasound of the neck showed a giant mass in the retropharyngeal space, displacing the trachea and esophagus anteriorly. Aspiration cytology was done, following which extensive cervical and chest ecchymosis occurred and her symptoms immediately improved. A repeat CT scan demonstrated that the cervical giant mass had vanished, but there was a residual mass in the left paratracheal space. Exploratory surgery of the neck revealed a parathyroid cyst with severe adhesion to the surrounding tissues. We considered that a ruptured parathyroid cyst had induced massive hemorrhage into the cervical tissues and mediastinum, but that the hemorrhage had been absorbed. Extracapsular hemorrhage from a parathyroid adenoma or cyst is rare, especially from a parathyroid cyst. In fact, to our knowledge, this represents only the third case of symptomatic spontaneous bleeding of a parathyroid cyst. Nevertheless, this entity should still be considered in the differential diagnosis of all rapidly progressing retropharyngeal masses.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Similar content being viewed by others

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Additional information

Received: March 3, 2002 / Accepted: September 3, 2002

Reprint requests to: I. Taniguchi

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Taniguchi, I., Maeda, T., Morimoto, K. et al. Spontaneous Retropharyngeal Hematoma of a Parathyroid Cyst: Report of a Case. Surg Today 33, 354–357 (2003).

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: