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Swollen Parotid Glands
Apr 1, 2002

I have learned that there is a radiation therapy to help reduce the swelling of the parotid glands. I have been coping with facial wasting and have recently gone through a series of silicon injections to reduce the "gaunt" look. It has been a major improvement and I have experienced a renewal of self esteem. Now, I want to tackle the swelling on either side of my face just below and in front of my ears. My doctor says it is the parotid gland and mentioned a new therapy. I am looking for more information. I would greatly appreciate anything you can send me.

Response from Dr. Henry

I am unaware of any new proven therapy for swollen parotid glands seen in the context of HIV infection. Often a CT scan will show polycystic disease commonly on both sides. Low dose radiation therapy has been effective at reducing the swelling in many of my patients. After a variable time period (in my experience >> 1 year) the swelling may come back and another short course of radiation therapy is utilized. If you become aware of anything else that works let me know. It is advisable to see an ENT specialist to rule out other cause of parotid enlargement (infection, tumor, etc). KH

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