Adenoid ameloblastoma in the posterior maxilla: a case report and review of the literature

  • 32 Accesses



Adenoid ameloblastoma is a rare benign odontogenic tumor that favors a slight predilection for male patients, fourth and fifth decades of life, and posterior regions of the jaws. To date, less than 40 cases have been reported in the English language literature. The radiographic aspects of adenoid ameloblastoma vary from unilocular and well-defined lesions to diffuse and multilocular lesions. Most of the lesions exhibit a radiolucent image and are usually large, with a mean size of 3.5 cm. Microscopically, pseudoductal structures composed of columnar cells in a palisaded arrangement formed from the parenchyma of the tumor were observed.

Case presentation

We describe a case of adenoid ameloblastoma in a 54-year-old woman, who presented with no symptoms. Panoramic radiography showed a well-circumscribed, unilocular radiolucency in the left posterior maxilla.


As odontogenic tumors are rare, some entities are infrequently encountered, making the diagnosis more difficult. Clinicians, oral and maxillofacial surgeons and oral pathologists should be familiar with the adenoid ameloblastoma and its differential diagnosis for accurate diagnosis and management.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Access options

Buy single article

Instant unlimited access to the full article PDF.

US$ 39.95

Price includes VAT for USA

Subscribe to journal

Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.

US$ 99

This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4


  1. 1.

    El-Naggar AK, Chan JKC, Grandis JR, Takata T, Slootweg PJ (2017) WHO classification of head and neck Tumours, 4th edn. IARC Press, Lyon, pp 215–218

  2. 2.

    Hertog D, van der Waal I (2010) Ameloblastoma of the jaws: a critical reappraisal based on a 40-years single institution experience. Oral Oncol 46:61–64.

  3. 3.

    Waldron CA, El-Mofty S (1987) A histopathologic study of 116 ameloblastomas with special reference to the desmoplastic variant. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 63:441–451.

  4. 4.

    Effiom OA, Ogundana OM, Akinshipo AO, Akintoye SO (2018) Ameloblastoma: current etiopathological concepts and management. Oral Dis 24:307–316.

  5. 5.

    Loyola AM, Cardoso SV, de Faria PR, Servato JP, Eisenberg AL, Dias FL, Thavaraj S, Gomes CC, Gomez RS (2015) Adenoid ameloblastoma: clinicopathologic description of five cases and systematic review of the current knowledge. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol 120:368–377.

  6. 6.

    Adorno-Farias D, Muniz VRVM, Soares AP, Cury PR, Rabelo RG, Fernández-Ramires R, de Azevedo RA, Dos Santos JN (2018) Ameloblastoma with adenoid features: a series of eight cases. Acta Histochem 120:468–476.

  7. 7.

    Brannon RB (1994) Adenoid Ameloblastoma with Dentinoid. Armed Forces Institute of Pathology. ROPCOM, Washington, DC, pp 1–94

  8. 8.

    Waldron CA (1959) The importance of histologic study of the various radiolucent areas of the jaws. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1959;12:19–30.

  9. 9.

    Dunlap CL, Fritzlen TJ (1972) Cystic odontoma with concomitant ameloblastoma (adenoameloblastic odontoma). Oral Surg 34:450–456

  10. 10.

    de Andrade SJ, de Carvalho MB, Rapoport A, Saba LM (1978) Odontogenic adenomatoid tumor of the mandible (adenoameloblastoma). Int Surg 63:39–42

  11. 11.

    Takata K (1985) Combined epithelial odontogenic tumor. Nippon Koku Geka Gakkai Zasshi 31:1981–1985

  12. 12.

    Orlowski WA, Doyle JL, Salb R (1991) Unique odontogenic tumor with dentinogenesis and features of unicystic plexiform ameloblastoma. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 72:91–94.

  13. 13.

    Tajima Y, Sakamoto E, Yamamoto Y (1992) Odontogenic cyst giving rise to an adenomatoid odontogenic tumor: report of a case with peculiar features. J Oral Maxillofac Surg 50:190–193.

  14. 14.

    Tajima Y, Yokose S, Sakamoto E, Yamamoto Y, Utsumi N (1992) Ameloblastoma arising in calcifying odontogenic cyst. Report of a case. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 74:776–769.

  15. 15.

    Slabbert H, Altini M, Crooks J, Uys P (1992) Ameloblastoma with dentinoid induction: dentinoameloblastoma. J Oral Pathol Med 21:46–48.

  16. 16.

    Takeda Y, Kuroda M, Suzuki A (1990) Ameloblastoma with prominent stromal ossification. Acta Pathol Japn 40:780–784.

  17. 17.

    Allen CM, Neville BW, Hammond HL (1998) Adenomatoid dentinoma. Report of four cases of an unusual odontogenic lesion. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod 86:313–317.

  18. 18.

    Matsumoto Y, Mizoue K, Seto K (2001) Atypical plexiform ameloblastoma with dentinoid: adenoid ameloblastoma with dentinoid. J Oral Pathol Med 30:251–244.

  19. 19.

    Evans BL, Carr RF, Phillipe LJ (2004) Adenoid ameloblastoma with dentinoid: a case report. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod 98:583–588.

  20. 20.

    Sivapathasundharam B, Einstein A (2007) Unicystic ameloblastoma with the presence of dentin. Indian J Dent Res 18:128–130

  21. 21.

    Ghasemi-Moridani S (2008) Yazdi I (2008) adenoid ameloblastoma with dentinoid: a case report. Arch Iran Med 11:110–112

  22. 22.

    Ide F, Mishima K, Saito I, Kusama K (2009) Diagnostically challenging epithelial odontogenic tumors: a selective review of 7 jawbone lesions. Head Neck Pathol 3:18–26.

  23. 23.

    Sonone A, Hande A, Chaudhary M, Bonde R, Sheorain A, Agni N (2011) Adenoid ameloblastoma with dentinoid and ghost cells. A composite odontogenic tumour: a rare case report and review of the literature. Oral Surg 4:77–81.

  24. 24.

    Saxena K, Jose M, Chatra LK, Sequiera J (2012) Adenoid ameloblastoma with dentinoid. J Oral Maxillofac Pathol 16:272–276.

  25. 25.

    Kumar K, Shetty DC, Wadhwan V, Dhanapal R, Singh HP (2013) Dentinoameloblastoma with ghost cells: a rare case report with emphasis on its biological behavior. Dent Res J (Isfahan) 10:103–107.

  26. 26.

    Khalele BA, Al-Shiaty RA (2016) A novel marker of ameloblastoma and systematic review of immunohistochemical findings. Ann Diag Pathol 22:18–24.

  27. 27.

    Salehinejad J, Gholami M, Eshghpour M, Mehri T (2016) An infrequent histopathological subtype of ameloblastoma: adenoid granular cell ameloblastoma with dentinoid. Dent Res J (Isfahan) 13:376–378

  28. 28.

    Khalele BAO (2017) Adenoid ameloblastoma with dentinoid and cellular atypia: a case report and literature review. Pathologica 109:379–381

  29. 29.

    Rai HK, Pai SM, Dayakar A, Supriya H (2017) Adenoid ameloblastoma with dentinoid: a rare hybrid variant. J Oral Maxillofac Pathol 21:319.

  30. 30.

    Deng L, Wang R, Yang M, Li W, Zou L (2019) Ameloblastic carcinoma: clinicopathological analysis of 18 cases and a systematic review. Head Neck.

  31. 31.

    de Arruda JAA, Schuch LF, Abreu LG, Silva LVO, Monteiro JLG, Pinho RF, Silva LP, de Sousa SC, de Andrade BAB, Romañach MJ, de Qc Lourenço S, Batista AC, de Mendonça EF, Martins MD, Rados PV, Rivero ER, de Souza LB, Pinheiro MDG, Gomes APN, Vasconcelos ACU, Sobral APV, Mesquita RA (2018) A multicentre study of 268 cases of calcifying odontogenic cysts and a literature review. Oral Dis 24:1282–1293.

  32. 32.

    de Arruda JAA, Abreu LG, Silva LVO, Schuch LF, Monteiro JLGC, Arantes DAC, da Costa AAS, Nóbrega KHS, Vasconcelos ACU, de Andrade BAB, Romañach MJ, Sobral APV, Rivero ERC, da Silva TA, Batista AC, Mesquita RA (2019) Calcifying epithelial odontogenic tumours: collaborative study of 32 cases and review of literature. Oral Dis 25:192–205.

  33. 33.

    Boffano P, Ruga E, Gallesio C (2010) Keratocystic odontogenic tumor (odontogenic keratocyst): preliminary retrospective review of epidemiologic, clinical, and radiologic features of 261 lesions from University of Turin. J Oral Maxillofac Surg 68:2994–2999.

  34. 34.

    Seintou A, Martinelli-Kläy CP, Lombardi T (2014) Unicystic ameloblastoma in children: systematic review of clinicopathological features and treatment outcomes. Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg 43:405–412.

  35. 35.

    de Arruda JAA, Monteiro JLGC, Abreu LG, de Oliveira Silva LV, Schuch LF, de Noronha MS, Callou G, Moreno A, Mesquita RA (2018) Calcifying odontogenic cyst, dentinogenic ghost cell tumor, and ghost cell odontogenic carcinoma: a systematic review. J Oral Pathol Med 47:721–730.

  36. 36.

    Alves DBM, Tuji FM, Alves FA, Rocha AC, Santos-Silva ARD, Vargas PA, Lopes MA (2018) Evaluation of mandibular odontogenic keratocyst and ameloblastoma by panoramic radiograph and computed tomography. Dentomaxillofac Radiol 47:20170288.

  37. 37.

    Chouinard AF, Peacock ZS, Faquin WC, Kaban LB (2017) Unicystic ameloblastoma revisited: comparison of Massachusetts General Hospital outcomes with original Robinson and Martinez report. J Oral Maxillofac Surg 75:2369–2378.

  38. 38.

    Siriwardena BSMS, Tennakoon TMPB, Hunter KD, Tilakaratne WM (2018) Unicystic ameloblastoma: analysis of 370 cases in a single center in Sri Lanka. J Oral Pathol Med 47:706–709.

  39. 39.

    Chrcanovic BR, Gomez RS (2019) Adenomatoid odontogenic tumor: an updated analysis of the cases reported in the literature. J Oral Pathol Med 48:10–16.

  40. 40.

    Bilodeau EA, Seethala RR (2019) Update on odontogenic tumors: proceedings of the north American head and neck pathology society. Head Neck Pathol 13:457–465.

  41. 41.

    Diniz MG, Gomes CC, de Sousa SF, Xavier GM, Gomez RS (2017) Oncogenic signaling pathways in benign odontogenic cysts and tumours. Oral Oncol 72:165–173.

Download references


The authors would like to thank Mrs. E. Greene for providing English editing of the manuscript.

Funding information

This study was supported by Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES, Finance Code 001), Brazil. J.A.A.A. and M.S.N. are the recipients of fellowships. We would like to thank the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq, #305493/2018-3, #455644/2018-1). T.A.S. and R.A.M. are research fellows of CNPq.

Author information

Correspondence to José Alcides Almeida de Arruda.

Ethics declarations

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

For this type of retrospective case report, formal consent is not required.

Informed consent

The patients provided informed consent.

Additional information

Publisher’s note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

de Arruda, J.A.A., Noronha, M.S., Abreu, L.G. et al. Adenoid ameloblastoma in the posterior maxilla: a case report and review of the literature. Oral Maxillofac Surg (2020) doi:10.1007/s10006-020-00830-1

Download citation


  • Ameloblastoma
  • Odontogenic tumors
  • Differential diagnosis
  • Maxilla
  • Treatment