What is sialorrhea?

It must first be mentioned that all children go through phases of drooling, particularly while concentrating.  Excessive drooling (sialorrhea or ptyalism) however is typically seen in two groups of children.  The first group is children with neurologic disorders that prevent recognition of saliva pooling in the mouth or hinder the act of swallowing. The second group has longstanding nasal obstruction, and cannot close the mouth to swallow for breathing concerns. Regardless of the underlying causes, sialorrhea can be a source of significant family distress, and may resist medical intervention or swallowing therapy.

Children with recalcitrant sialorrhea are treated with bilateral submandibular gland removal or duct rerouting in conjunction with parotid duct ligation. This provides the best long term success, while allowing the smaller glands that remain to provide lubrication to the mouth and reduce dental disease.

What is parotitis?

Inflammation of the spit gland in front and below the ear (parotid gland) is called parotitis. It may arise from infection, a stone blocking a duct, or from a variety of inflammatory diseases.  All patients are thoroughly evaluated to determine the source of inflammation, but only those with stones typically require procedures to unplug the ducts.

What are Type I branchial cysts?

Branchial cysts are leftovers of head and neck development before birth. Type I cysts are related to ear development, and often extend into the face and parotid gland.  Once identified these require removal, as they will often become infected and lead to other issues. Cyst removal often involves removal of part of the parotid gland as well.

For more information on any of these conditions or to schedule a consultation, call 404-255-2033.