Jawbone metastasis masquerading as dental pain

Y. Goldman, N. Yarom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Metastases to the oral cavity are rare. However, in 25% of cases, oral symptoms will be the first sign of metastatic disease. The incidence of jaws metastases is twice as high as the incidence of metastases to the soft tissues of the oral cavity. In some cases, jaws metastases can mimic dental or periodontal pain. We report a case of a 67 year old female who was referred to our clinic because of severe pain on her left posterior mandible which was not relieved by endodontic treatment of the first and second molar. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005 and had been treated with surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Seven years later, lung metastases were found and she was treated with chemotherapy. Later on, brain metastases developed which had been treated with radiotherapy. On presentation, she complained of pain on the posterior left mandible which was accompanied by a burning sensation of the lower left lip and chin. CT scan revealed a soft tissue mass perforating the lingual and buccal plates of the posterior left mandible, which was compatible with a diagnosis of metastasis. Radiotherapy rapidly relieved the pain. Unfortunately, the patient passed away one month later. Dentists should be able to recognize the signs and symptoms associated with metastases to the jaws and should include it in the differential diagnosis, especially in patients with oncologic background.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-7, 61
JournalRefuat Hapeh Vehashinayim
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016


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