Bartholin's gland carcinoma-the diagnostic and management challenges of a rare malignancy-a case report and review of current literature.
Addley S., Sadeghi N., Smyth SL., Johnson C., Damato S., Soleymani Majd H.
BACKGROUND: Bartholin's gland carcinoma (BGC) accounts for approximately 5% of all vulval malignancies-making it an extremely rare malignancy of the female genital tract. It commonly manifests as a painless unilateral mass, near the introitus. BGC more commonly occurs in post-menopausal women. Unfortunately, over half of cases are associated with a missed or delayed diagnosis as it is often mistaken for a Bartholin's gland cyst or abscess. These tumours have a predilection for local and perineural invasion. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the imaging modality of choice for suspected Bartholin's tumour. Although no current guidance dedicated to the management of BGC exists, the majority of cases are treated by primary excision and bilateral groin node dissection (GND). Chemoradiotherapy has a role in both the adjuvant and palliative setting. BGC are typically associated with more advanced disease at presentation, higher rates of recurrence and poorer prognosis than other vulval cancer sub-types. CASE DESCRIPTION: We share a case report of primary BGC-supported by high-quality radiological and surgical images; and further supplemented by a detailed review of current literature. CONCLUSIONS: We aim to generate improved clinician awareness of this rare pathology, highlighting the need for vigilance to avoid misdiagnosis and subsequent treatment delay; as well as contribute towards generating consensus on the approach to management of this gynaecological malignancy.