Dentigerous Cyst
What is a Dentigerous Cyst?

The second most common tooth-derived cyst is the dentigerous cyst, which develops around the crown of an
unerupted tooth.

What are the causes of dentigerous cysts?

It most frequently is found in areas where unerupted teeth are found: wisdom teeth and upper jaw canines, in
decreasing order of frequency.

What are the signs & symptoms of dentigerous cysts?

These cysts can grow very large and can move teeth but, more commonly, they are relatively small.

dentigerous cysts are asymptomatic and their discovery is usually an incidental finding on taking an X-ray of
the mouth.

Dentigerous cysts can become quite large and can place the patient at risk from a pathological jaw fracture.
Photos of dentigerous cysts and their associated teeth
Jaw X-ray (OPG) showing a very large dentigerous cyst (yellow dots) & tooth (red dots) in the lower right jaw
How is it treated?

Teeth that have dentigerous cysts associated with them are removed together with the cysts.

cysts are sent off for closer scrutiny under the microscope.

Once removed, they are very unlikely to come back.

Impacted teeth with small areas of shadowing around their crowns (suggesting the presence of normal
rather than dentigerous cyst) also may be monitored with serial X-rays.  Any increase in the size of the
‘shadowing’ should prompt removal and microscopic analysis.
Dentigerous Cysts - Key Features
  • Arise in bone & contain the crown of an unerupted tooth which is usually

  • Are most frequently associated with unerupted 3rd molars (wisdom teeth) and

  • Clinical & radiographic features usually provide an accurate pre-operative
    diagnosis but confirmation is histological

  • Responds to enucleation or marsupialisation and does not recur after

Radiographics 1999.  Cysts & Cystic Lesions of the Mandible

Int J Clin Ped Dent 2010.  Dentigerous Cyst of Inflammatory Origin

Imaging Sci Dent 2012.  Dentigerous Cyst associated with an Impacted Mesiodens - Report of 2 Cases

Rhinology 2012.  Dentigerous Cyst from Supernumerary Teeth

Int J Clin Ped Dent 2013.  Management of a Dentigerous Cyst - A Two-Year Review

Int J Head Neck Surg 2013.  Dentigerous Cyst of the Mandible

Int J Sci Study 2014.  Dentigerous Cyst Associated with an Erupted Tooth – An Unusual Presentation

Dental Update 2015.  Odontogenic Cysts - An Overview

JOMS 2015.  Multiple Dentigerous Cysts - A Case Report & Review

Stomato Balt Dent Maxillofac J 2017.  Conservative Management of Large Mandibular Dentigerous Cysts with a
Novel Approach for Follow Up - 2 Case Reports

Dent J 2019.  Unusual Imaging Features of Dentigerous Cyst - A Case Report

Oral Surg 2019.  Spontaneous Regression of a Dentigerous Cyst associated with an Impacted Mandibular Canine
- A Case Report

University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Dentistry.  Cysts of the Jaws

Power Point Presentation about the Origin of Odontogenic
Cysts & Tumours