Kimura Disease Clinical Presentation

Updated: Apr 27, 2017
  • Author: Alan Snyder; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
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Kimura disease typically presents as a painless mass or masses in the head and neck region, with occasional pruritus of the overlying skin. Renal disease, nephrotic syndrome in particular, is present in up to 20% of patients with Kimura disease. [20] An estimated 12-16% of patients with Kimura disease exhibit proteinuria upon examination, of which 59-78% have nephrotic syndrome. [21] Less commonly, several reports in the literature have linked Kimura disease with a hypercoagulable state in patients without associated nephrotic syndrome. [22]


Physical Examination

Patients with Kimura disease typically present with nontender subcutaneous nodules and masses in the head and neck, especially in the parotid and submandibular regions. These lesions are often associated with lymphadenopathy. Less frequently, the orbit (including the eyelids, conjunctiva, and lacrimal glands [23] ), paranasal sinuses, epiglottis, tympanic membrane, parotid gland, parapharyngeal space, palate, axilla, groin, and breast [18, 24, 25, 26] may be involved. [27, 28] Although Kimura disease mainly affects the head and neck, involvement of the extremities and inguinal lymph nodes has been reported. [29] In addition, a presentation of Kimura disease as a pulmonary hilar mass has been described. [30] Visible ischemia of the extremities may be present as a result of the hypercoagulable sequelae of Kimura disease, and related chronic diseases such as Raynaud phenomenon and acute limb ischemia (ALI) have been reported when left untreated. [7, 31, 32]

See the image below.

Fifteen-year-old boy with nontender, firm swelling Fifteen-year-old boy with nontender, firm swelling (5 cm x 3 cm) in the left cervical area of 8 months’ duration. Courtesy of Our Dermatology Online (




Rarely, large nodules or tumors from Kimura disease have ulcerated. After treatment, recurrence also has been reported.

Abbas et al reported one case of postsurgical facial disfigurement effectively treated with photodynamic therapy. [33]

On two known occasions, brain embolisms have occurred due to Kimura disease–induced thrombi. [34]