Chronic painless swelling of the parotid glands is frequently seen in HIV infected children. The condition, known as chronic parotitis, may occur in isolation or may be associated with generalised lymphadenopathy with or without hepatosplenomegaly. In affected children the parotid glands are chronically enlarged and palpable bilaterally and resemble the swollen parotid glands seen in mumps. Occasionally HIV-infected children with chronic parotitis and generalised lymphadenopathy have lymphocytic interstitial pneumonitis as well. The cause of this condition is not known but it has been suggested that chronic parotitis in HIV-infected children may be due to Epstein Barr virus infection.
No specific treatment is available for chronic parotitis but antiretroviral therapy has been shown to be effective in treating affected children. Chronic parotitis superinfected with bacteria will present with tenderness and may be treated with antibiotics and analgesics.