Background Pulmonary mucoepidermoid carcinoma is a rare salivary gland-type neoplasm. We aimed to elucidate the optimal management of this rare condition by reviewing the treatment outcomes of patients at our institution with mucoepidermoid carcinoma of the lung. Methods We performed a retrospective review of all patients with pulmonary mucoepidermoid carcinoma who underwent surgical treatment between January 1993 and December 2012. We reviewed the patients' clinical characteristics and the therapeutic interventions undertaken. Results Nine patients were evaluated in this study, 7 of whom were female. The median age of all patients was 54 years (range 10-72 years). Six patients had tumors of a low histologic grade, and the other 3 had high-grade malignancies. Prior to surgery, 2 patients required endobronchial intervention for obstructive pneumonia. Eight patients underwent lobectomy, and one had a bilobectomy. Two patients required bronchoplasty, and one required resection of the left atrium for complete resection of the primary neoplasm. Two patients with advanced disease and high-grade tumors died due to cancer progression. The overall 5-year survival rate was 72.9%. One patient with a high-grade malignancy demonstrated exon 21 mutation of the epidermal growth factor receptor gene. Conclusions Complete surgical resection is important for long-term survival in patients with pulmonary mucoepidermoid carcinoma. The techniques of bronchoplasty and extended resection may contribute to better surgical management of this disease. Endobronchial interventions may be considered for the management of obstructive pneumonia prior to surgery.
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