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Parotidectomy is the removal of the parotid gland. This gland is found below the ear. It makes saliva. The saliva enters the mouth through a tube (duct) near the back teeth.
The gland is taken out to remove a blockage in the parotid duct. This can be caused by a stone, scarring, or a tumour. Most tumours that grow in the parotid gland are benign, meaning they are not cancer.
You will be asleep during the surgery. The doctor will take out the gland through a cut (incision) in your neck and in front of your ear. The incision usually heals without leaving an obvious scar.
You will likely have a tube called a drain placed behind your ear. This lets fluid out of the incision. Your doctor will probably take this out a few days after your surgery.
Your doctor will tell you if you need to come back to have stitches taken out.
You may be able to return to work or your normal routine after a few weeks. How long it will take depends on several things, such as how much tissue was taken out, how quickly you recover, and the kind of work you do.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Surgery can be stressful. This information will help you understand what you can expect. And it will help you safely prepare for surgery.
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Current as of: December 2, 2020
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Sarah Marshall MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & Donald R. Mintz MD - Otolaryngology
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