What is a glomus tumor?

David M. Vernick, MD
Ear, Nose & Throat (Otolaryngology)
A glomus tumor is an abnormal growth of specialized cells that occure in a few areas of the body. They commonly occur in the middle ear (glomus tympanicum), on the jugular bulb (glomus jugulare), on the vagus nerve ( glomus vagale) or along the carotid artery in the neck (carotid body tumor) They are very vascular and can cause pulsating sounds in the ear. Many of them are benign, but occasionally they can be malignant. Glomus tumors need to be observed regularly by a doctor. If they grow too big, they must be shrunk with radiation or removed surgically.

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