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It is also known as chemodectoma or carotid body tumour. These tumours arise from the chemoreceptor cells of the carotid body. It is usually unilateral and commonly presents in the 5th decade of life. There is an association with pheochromocytoma. A higher incidence of the tumours is noted in oxygen deprived individuals like in cyanotic heart disease, chronic hypoxia in high altitude inhabitants. The patient often presents with a long standing history of several years of a slowly enlarging painless lump at the bifurcation of the carotid artery in the neck. This condition is investigated using Doppler study, CT scan and carotid angiogram and helps in distinguishing it from other causes of neck swellings like carotid body aneurysm, metastatic lymph nodes, salivary gland tumors, cervical cysts ,lymphomas and neurogenic tumors. The treatment of choice is surgical excision.
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