Craniofacial Osteomas: From Diagnosis to Therapy

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An osteoma is a benign bone lesion with no clear pathogenesis, almost exclusive to the craniofacial area. Osteomas show very slow continuous growth, even in adulthood, unlike other bony lesions. Since these lesions are frequently asymptomatic, the diagnosis is usually made by plain radiography or by a computed tomography (CT) scan performed for other reasons. Rarely, the extensive growth could determine aesthetic or functional problems that vary according to different locations. Radiographically, osteomas appear as radiopaque lesions similar to bone cortex, and may determine bone expansion. Cone beam CT is the optimal imaging modality for assessing the relationship between osteomas and adjacent structures, and for surgical planning. The differential diagnosis includes several inflammatory and tumoral pathologies, but the typical craniofacial location may aid in the diagnosis. Due to the benign nature of osteomas, surgical treatment is limited to symptomatic lesions. Radical surgical resection is the gold standard therapy; it is based on a minimally invasive surgical approach with the aim of achieving an optimal cosmetic result. Reconstructive surgery for an osteoma is quite infrequent and reserved for patients with large central osteomas, such as big mandibular or maxillary lesions. In this regard, computer-assisted surgery guarantees better outcomes, providing the possibility of preoperative simulation of demolitive and reconstructive surgery.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number23
Publication statusPublished - Nov 27 2021


  • bone neoplasms
  • computed tomography
  • oral surgery
  • osteoma
  • radiography


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