Cytological features of the Warthin-like variant of salivary mucoepidermoid carcinoma

Jen Fan Hang, Chung H. Shum, Syed Z. Ali, Justin A. Bishop

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Warthin-like mucoepidermoid carcinoma is a recently proposed variant of musoepidermoid carcinoma. Histologically, it is characterized by its close resemblance to Warthin tumor, including dense lymphocytic infiltration, flattened intermediate epithelium resembling squamous metaplasia, and cystic change. Given its histologic similarity to Warthin tumor, confirmatory testing for MAML2 rearrangement is often required for this diagnosis. Here we present the first cytologic reports of two 53-year-old female patients with parotid masses. In both cases, the fine needle aspirations showed fragments of bland epithelium with a squamous appearance, mucinous cyst content, and focal lymphocytic background. Neither frank keratinization nor mucinous cells were identified in the smears. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) study confirmed MAML2 rearrangement on the resection specimens in both. Other cytologic differential diagnoses, including Warthin tumor with metaplasia, lymphadenoma, and lymphoepithelial cyst, were briefly discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1132-1136
Number of pages5
JournalDiagnostic cytopathology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2017


  • fine needle aspiration
  • mucoepidermoid carcinoma
  • salivary gland
  • warthin tumor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Histology


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