Skip to main content Accessibility help

Sublingual dermoid cysts: case report and review of the literature

  • E Kyriakidou (a1), T Howe (a2), B Veale (a2) and S Atkins (a1)



Dermoid cysts in the floor of the mouth are relatively uncommon developmental lesions. They are thought to arise in the midline and along the lines of embryonic fusion of the facial processes containing ectodermal tissue.

Case report:

A 17-year-old female presented with a 3-month history of a growing, progressive swelling in the mouth floor. Clinical examination revealed a rather large symmetrical, soft swelling in the mouth floor, displacing the tongue superiorly. The fast growing nature and size of the lesion raised suspicion of potential compromise to the airway. Surgical excision was therefore performed.


Differential diagnosis of cystic lesions in the floor of the mouth is of paramount importance, as the recommended surgical techniques vary depending on the anatomical position of the lesions. The intraoral approach is preferred for those lesions that do not extend beyond the mylohyoid muscle boundaries; this leads to a satisfactory cosmetic and functional outcome.


Corresponding author

Address for correspondence:Miss Elena Kyriakidou, School of Clinical Dentistry, University of Sheffield, 19 Claremont Crescent, Sheffield S10 2TA, UK E-mail:


Hide All
1Makos, C, Noussios, G, Peios, M, Gougousis, S, Chouridis, P. Dermoid cysts of the floor of the mouth: two case reports. Case Rep Med 2011;2011:362170
2Pan, M, Nakamura, YC, Clark, M, Eisig, S. Intraoral dermoid cyst in an infant: a case report. J Oral Maxillofac Surg 2011;69:1398–402
3Duval, M, Al-Macki, K, Chen, M-F, Chauvin, PJ, Faingold, R, Manoukian, JJ. Infected dermoid cyst of the tongue with a sinus tract to the submental skin. Int J Pediatr Otorhinolaryngol 2007;2:176–9
4Howell, CJ. The sublingual dermoid cyst. Report of five cases and review of the literature. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1985;59:578–80
5Menditti, D, Laino, L, Ferrara, N, Baldi, A. Dermoid cyst of the mandibula: a case report. Cases J 2008;1:260
6New, GB, Erich, JB. Dermoid cysts of the head and neck. Surg Gynecol Obst 1937;65:4855
7MacNeil, SD, Moxham, JP. Review of floor of mouth dysontogenic cysts. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol 2010;119:165–73
8Meyer, I. Dermoid cysts (dermoids) of the floor of the mouth. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1955;8:1149–64
9King, RC, Smith, BR, Burk, JL. Dermoid cyst in the floor of the mouth. Review of the literature and case reports. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1994;78:567–76
10Gordon, PE, Faquin, WC, Lahey, E, Kaban, LB. Floor-of-mouth dermoid cysts: report of 3 variants and a suggested change in terminology. J Oral Maxillofac Surg 2013;71:1034–41
11Pryor, SG, Lewis, JE, Weaver, AL, Orvidas, LJ. Pediatric dermoid cysts of the head and neck. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2005;132:938–42
12Baker, BR, Mitchell, DF. The pathogenesis of epidermoid implantation cysts. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1965;19:494501
13Erich, JB, Johnsen, DS. Congenital dermoid cyst. Am J Surg 1953;85:104–7
14Bradley, PJ. The complex nasal dermoid. Head Neck 1983;5:469–73
15Pratt, LW. Midline cysts of the nasal dorsum: embryologic origin and treatment. Laryngoscope 1965;75:968–80
16Rahbar, R, Shah, P, Mulliken, JB, Robson, CD, Perez-Atayde, AR, Proctor, MR et al. The presentation and management of nasal dermoid: a 30-year experience. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2003;129:464–71
17Hitchin, AD, Smith, GA. The sequelae in a case of sublingual dermoid cyst with ankyloglossia. Br J Oral Surg 1970;8:175–8
18Ohta, N, Watanabe, T, Ito, T, Kubota, T, Suzuki, Y, Ishida, A et al. A case of sublingual dermoid cyst: extending the limits of the oral approach. Case Rep Otolaryngol 2012;2012:634949
19Mesolella, M, Cantone, E, Galli, V, Iengo, M. Challenging management of a giant sublingual dermoid cyst rapidly enlarged throughout pregnancy and influence of hormonal factors. Surgical Science 2013;4:216–18
20Boko, E, Amaglo, K, Kpemissi, E. A bulky dermoid cyst of the floor of the mouth. Eur Ann Otorhinolaryngol Head Neck Dis 2014;131:131–4
21Jadwani, S, Misra, B, Kallianpur, S, Bansod, S. Dermoid cyst of the floor of the mouth with abundant hair: a case report. J Maxillofac Oral Surg 2009;8:388–9
22Ho, MW, Crean, SJ. Simultaneous occurrence of sublingual dermoid cyst and oral alimentary tract cyst in an infant: a case report and review of the literature. Int J Paediatr Dent 2003;13:441–6
23El-Hakim, IE, Alyamani, A. Alternative surgical approaches for excision of dermoid cyst of the floor of mouth. Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg 2008;37:497–9
24McGregor, IA. Symphyseal mandibular osteotomy in the approach to sublingual dermoid cyst. Br J Plast Surg 1991;44:544–5
25Longo, F, Maremonti, P, Mangone, GM, De Maria, G, Califano, L. Midline (dermoid) cysts of the floor of the mouth: report of 16 cases and review of surgical techniques. Plast Reconstr Surg 2003;112:1560–5
26Tsirevelou, P, Papamanthos, M, Chlopsidis, P, Zourou, I, Skoulakis, C. Epidermoid cyst of the floor of the mouth: two case reports. Cases J 2009;2:9360
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

The Journal of Laryngology & Otology
  • ISSN: 0022-2151
  • EISSN: 1748-5460
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-laryngology-and-otology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed