Rare Immunology News

Disease Profile


Prevalence estimates on Rare Medical Network websites are calculated based on data available from numerous sources, including US and European government statistics, the NIH, Orphanet, and published epidemiologic studies. Rare disease population data is recognized to be highly variable, and based on a wide variety of source data and methodologies, so the prevalence data on this site should be assumed to be estimated and cannot be considered to be absolutely correct.


US Estimated

Europe Estimated

Age of onset





Autosomal dominant A pathogenic variant in only one gene copy in each cell is sufficient to cause an autosomal dominant disease.


Autosomal recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of each gene of the chromosome are needed to cause an autosomal recessive disease and observe the mutant phenotype.


dominant X-linked dominant inheritance, sometimes referred to as X-linked dominance, is a mode of genetic inheritance by which a dominant gene is carried on the X chromosome.


recessive Pathogenic variants in both copies of a gene on the X chromosome cause an X-linked recessive disorder.


Mitochondrial or multigenic Mitochondrial genetic disorders can be caused by changes (mutations) in either the mitochondrial DNA or nuclear DNA that lead to dysfunction of the mitochondria and inadequate production of energy.


Multigenic or multifactor Inheritance involving many factors, of which at least one is genetic but none is of overwhelming importance, as in the causation of a disease by multiple genetic and environmental factors.


Not applicable


Other names (AKA)

Sialoadenitis; Adenitis, salivary gland; Salivary gland inflammation


Sialadenitis is an infection of the salivary glands. It is usually caused by a virus or bacteria. The parotid (in front of the ear) and submandibular (under the chin) glands are most commonly affected. Sialadenitis may be associated with pain, tenderness, redness, and gradual, localized swelling of the affected area. Sialadenitis most commonly affects the elderly and chronically ill especially those with dry mouth or who are dehydrated, but can also affected people of any age including newborn babies. Diagnosis is usually made by clinical exam but a CT scan, MRI scan or ultrasound may be done if the doctor suspects an abscess or to look for stones. Treatment may include an antibiotic (if bacterial), warm compresses, increasing fluid intake and good oral hygiene. Most salivary gland infections go away on their own or are cured with treatment. Complications are not common.[1][2][3][4]


Signs and symptoms of sialadenitis may include fever, chills, and unilateral pain and swelling in the affected area. The affected gland may be firm and tender, with redness of the overlying skin. Pus may drain through the gland into the mouth.[1][2][3]


Sialadenitis usually occurs after decreased flow of saliva (hyposecretion) or duct obstruction, but may develop without an obvious cause. Saliva flow can be reduced in people who are sick or recovering from surgery, or people who are dehydrated, malnourished, or immunosuppressed. A stone or a kink in the salivary duct can also diminish saliva flow, as can certain medications (such as antihistamines, diuretics, psychiatric medications, beta-blockers, or barbiturates). It often occurs in chronically ill people with dry mouth (xerostomia), people with Sjogren syndrome, and in those who have had radiation therapy to the oral cavity.[1][3][4]

Sialadenitis is most commonly due to bacterial infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus. Other bacteria which can cause the infections include include streptococci, coliforms, and various anaerobic bacteria. Although less common than bacteria, several viruses have also been implicated in sialadenitis. These include the mumps virus, HIV, coxsackievirus, parainfluenza types I and II, influenza A, and herpes.[1][2][3][4]


The treatment of sialadenitis depends on what type of microbe is causing the infection. If the infection is bacterial, an antibiotic effective against whichever bacteria is present will be the treatment of choice. If the infection is due to a virus, such as herpes, treatment is usually symptomatic but may include antiviral medications.[1][2][3][4]

In addition, since sialadenitis usually occurs after decreased flow of saliva (hyposecretion), patients are usually advised to drink plenty of fluids and eat or drink things that trigger saliva flow (such as lemon juice or hard candy). Warm compresses, and gland massage may also be helpful if the flow is obstructed in some way. Good oral hygiene are also important. Occasionally an abscess may form which needs to be drained especially if it proves resistant to antibiotics (or antiviral medication)[1][2][3][4]

In rare cases of chronic or relapsing sialadenitis, surgery may be needed to remove part or all of the gland. This is more common when there is an underlying condition which is causing the hyposecretion.[1]

Learn more

These resources provide more information about this condition or associated symptoms. The in-depth resources contain medical and scientific language that may be hard to understand. You may want to review these resources with a medical professional.

Where to Start

  • MedlinePlus was designed by the National Library of Medicine to help you research your health questions, and it provides more information about this topic.
  • The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), purposes to improve oral, dental and craniofacial health through research, research training, and the dissemination of health information. Click on the link to view information on this topic.
  • The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) has a report for patients and families about this condition. NORD is a patient advocacy organization for individuals with rare diseases and the organizations that serve them.

In-Depth Information

  • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
  • The Merck Manual for health care professionals provides information on Sialadenitis.
  • The Monarch Initiative brings together data about this condition from humans and other species to help physicians and biomedical researchers. Monarch’s tools are designed to make it easier to compare the signs and symptoms (phenotypes) of different diseases and discover common features. This initiative is a collaboration between several academic institutions across the world and is funded by the National Institutes of Health. Visit the website to explore the biology of this condition.
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Sialadenitis. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.


  1. Yoskovitch A. Submandibular Sialadenitis/Sialadenosis. Medscape Reference. May 6 2016; https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/882358-overview.
  2. Jothi S. Salivary gland infection. MedlinePlus. August 5 2015; https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001041.htm.
  3. Sasaki CR. Sialadenitis. Merck Manuals Professional Version. November 2014; https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/ear-nose-and-throat-disorders/oral-and-pharyngeal-disorders/sialadenitis.
  4. Sanan A and Cognetti DM. Rare Parotid Gland Diseases. Otolaryngol Clin North Am. April 2016; 49(2):489-500. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26902981.

Rare Immunology News