Vallecular Cysts

Also known as: base of tongue cysts, epiglottic mucus retention cysts.

What are vallecular cysts?

Vallecular cysts are pockets of infection that develop at the base of the tongue. They are often present at birth but tend to grow worse over time.

What causes vallecular cysts?

The exact cause of vallecular cysts isn’t entirely clear. They may occur due to a blocked salivary gland or be related to other types of cysts such as thyroglossal duct cysts.

What are the symptoms of vallecular cysts?

Vallecular cysts can cause symptoms such as noisy breathing (stridor), difficulty feeding and trouble breathing.

What are vallecular cysts care options?

If the vallecular cysts is causing symptoms, the typical treatment is to decompress the cyst surgically.

Reviewed by: Brian Ho, MD

This page was last updated on: 3/23/2018 2:10:44 PM

From the Newsdesk

Meet Sandeep Davé, MD - The Division of Otolaryngology (ENT) at Nicklaus Children's Hospital
Dr. Davé is employed by Pediatric Specialists of America (PSA), the multispecialty group practice of Nicklaus Children’s Health System. He is chief of the PSA Section of Otolaryngology at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital. Dr. Davé sees patients at Nicklaus Children's Hospital. 
Pediatric Neurosurgeon and Chief of Surgery for Nicklaus Children’s Passes Away
The medical staff, employees and volunteers of Nicklaus Children’s Hospital mourn the passing of our esteemed Dr. Sanjiv Bhatia, a longstanding leader and dedicated champion for children with complex medical conditions and their families.


Nicklaus Children’s is among the first pediatric facilities in the region to offer robotic single-site incision surgery for children utilizing the da Vinci Xi® system. The technique offers a single incision minimally invasive surgical option for gallbladder or ovarian surgeries in children.