Relative frequency of peripheral odontogenic tumors: A study of 45 new cases and comparison with studies from the literature

Amos Buchner*, Phillip W. Merrell, William M. Carpenter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Peripheral (extraosseous) odontogenic tumors are rare, and reports in the literature have mainly been single case reports or a small series of cases. The aim of this study was to determine the relative frequency of peripheral (extraosseous) odontogenic tumors relative to one another and relative to their central (intraosseous) counterparts in an oral pathology biopsy service and to compare these data with information available in the literature. METHODS: The files of the Pacific Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology Laboratory of the University of the Pacific, San Francisco, CA, USA, served as the source of material for this study. Files were systematically searched for all cases of peripheral odontogenic tumors (POTs) during a 20-year-period. RESULTS: There were 91 178 cases accessed in which central and POTs were identified in 1133 (1.24%), central tumors in 1088 (1.2%), and peripheral tumors in 45 (0.05%). Peripheral tumors accounted for 4% of all 1133 central and POTs. Peripheral odontogenic fibroma (PODF) was the most common of the 45 POTs accounting for 51.1% (23 cases) followed by peripheral ameloblastoma (PA) 28.9% (13 cases) and peripheral calcifying cystic odontogenic tumor (PCCOT) 13.3% (six cases). Peripheral calcifying epithelial odontogenic tumor, peripheral ameloblastic fibroma, and peripheral ameloblastic carcinoma were also identified - each comprised 2.2% (one case each). PODF was more common than its central counterpart by a 1.4:1 ratio. This was the only peripheral tumor that was more common than its central counterpart. PA accounted for 9.3% of all ameloblastomas and PCCOT for 26% of all calcifying cystic odontogenic tumors. CONCLUSION: There is only scarce information in the literature on the relative frequency of POTs. Additional studies should be conducted to determine the true relative frequency. To ensure accuracy, pathologists with experience in the field of odontogenic tumors should conduct these studies. Intraosseous tumors that perforate through the bone to the gingival tissue, clinically presenting as 'peripheral tumors' should be excluded.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)385-391
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Oral Pathology and Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Aug 2006


  • Gingival neoplasms
  • Jaw neoplasms
  • Mandibular neoplasms
  • Maxillary neoplasms
  • Odontogenic tumors


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