THE CAROTID-body tumor is an uncommon neoplasm with less than 500 cases reported in literature.
Many and varied names have been used to designate these tumors and in the past they were frequently classified as endotheliomas, angiomas, angiosarcomas, hamartomas, carcinomas, and reticulum-cell sarcomas. Today, an accurate microscopic differentiation of these varieties of neoplasms is to be expected.1,2
These tumors have been termed "paraganglioma" by Hersheimer, "nonchromaffin paraganglioma" by Lattes and Waltner, and "chemodectoma" by Mulligan.3 The most common site of origin of chemodectomas is the carotid body, but tumors have also been found associated with the glomus jugulare, the glomus intravagale, and the aortic-pulmonary bodies, also along the femoral canal, in the eye, in the mandible, in the supraclavicular regions, the retroperitoneum, and the ileal mesentery. It is probable that not all the paraganglionic foci in the body have been identified and classified anatomically.1,4 The carotid body