Odontogenic tumors in Nigerian children and adolescents- a retrospective study of 92 cases.
BACKGROUND: Tumours arising from odontogenic tissues are rare and constitute a heterogenous group of interesting lesions. The aim of this study was to determine the relative frequency of odontogenic tumors (OT) among Nigerian children and adolescents 19 years or younger. PATIENTS AND METHODS: The histopathology records were retrospectively reviewed for all the tumors and tumor-like lesions of the oral cavity and the jaws seen in children and adolescents <or= 19 years seen between January 1980 and December 2003. Hematoxylin and eosin-stained sections were re-evaluated and the diagnosis in each case was confirmed or modified according to World Health Organization (WHO) classification, 1992; and were subjected to analysis of age, sex, site of tumor and histopathologic type. RESULTS: A total of 477 tumors and tumor-like lesions were seen in patients <or= 19 years during the period of the study. Of these, 92 (19.3%) were odontogenic tumors. Benign odontogenic tumors constituted 98.9% of the cases seen, while only 1 case (1.1%) of malignant variety was seen during the period. The mean (SD) age of patients was 14.9 (+/- 3.1) years (range, 4-19 years). Male-to-female ratio was 1:1; and mandible-to-maxilla ratio was 2.7:1. OT's were most frequently seen in patients aged 16-19 years (46.7%) and the least number (2.2%) were found in patients aged 0-5 years. Among nine histologic types of OT seen, ameloblastoma (48.9%), adenomatoid odontogenic tumor (19.6%) and odontogenic myxoma (8.7%) were predominant. Multicystic/solid and unicystic variants of ameloblastoma were diagnosed in 40 (89%) and 5 (11%) cases respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Odontogenic tumors are relatively common in children and adolescents in Nigeria. One out of every 5 children and adolescents with tumors and tumor-like lesions of oral cavity and the jaws seen in this study had a diagnosis of odontogenic tumor.