Giant Keratocystic Odontogenic Tumor: Three Cases and a Literature Review

Document Type : Case Report


Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), School of Medical Sciences (FCM), São Paulo, Brazil.


A keratocystic odontogenic tumor is a benign intra-bone mass originating from dental lamina or its residue. It represents 2–11% of jaw cysts, and has a slow but aggressive growth. The evaluation of molecular characteristics, immunohistochemistry, and genetic expression currently have no established classification regarding the evolution and pathophysiologic pattern of these lesions.
Materials and Methods:
This is a clinical retrospective study with a full analysis of patient history regarding physical evaluation, radiologic images, pathology results, and surgical resection. We performed a major literature review concerning current concepts relating to its biological characterization.
Three cases of keratocystic odontogenic tumor were identified. Two of the cases were large, with aggressive behavior and significant bone destruction and recurrence, which had been overlooked for more than a decade. The third case had an early diagnosis, and the treatment led to full recovery and complete healing.
The keratocystic odontogenic tumor is a benign lesion with slow growth, which lends itself to a more conservative treatment, even in cases of large lesions. A better understanding of these tumors, both at the biological and molecular level, could lead to guidelines for treatment and prognosis of such patients.