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Dental and Oral Health (Adults)

Bump on Hard Palate in Mouth

12/22/2010

Question:

Hello. I have a bump on the hard palate in my mouth, a few millimeters behind my left front tooth. The bump has been there for a long time, a year or more. It`s roughly 3-4 millimeters in diameter. It`s the same color as the surrounding tissue, in fact in looks like healthy tissue besides the fact that it`s a bump. The surface of the bump is a bit squishy, but mostly it`s hard like the surrounding area of the hard palate. It never changes in appearance, no color change or size change. There`s no associated pain.

What might this be?

Answer:

I would need to actually see this lesion in person to determine what is occurring. With that said, there are a number of possible explanations for what you are describing. The location, posterior to the anterior teeth if it is in the midline may be related to the incisal foramen or it possibly is the lingual extension of the incisive papilla, or the extreme, an incisive canal (nasopalatine) cyst. The morphology of the incisive canal is very diverse, and can mimic a cyst, thus the reason for an extensive clinical evaluation and dental history.

It also could be a lipoma or fibroma, since it is the same color as the palatal tissue and 3-4 mm in diameter and “squishy”. Lipomas are just little fat accumulations (benign fat tumors) and fibromas are a collection of fibrous connective tissue, possibly resulting from some form of trauma and excess reparative tissue. I would strongly suggest that you have it evaluated by your primary care provider or dentist.

It would be advisable to have a periapical radiograph taken of the anterior region to rule out cyst formation. Biopsy may be the only way of determining a definitive diagnosis and unless it is enlarging/expanding or becoming symptomatic your dentist may want to just keep an eye on it, and evaluate every six months when you go in for your routine cleanings and exam.

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Response by:

Richard J Jurevic, DDS, PhD Richard J Jurevic, DDS, PhD
Formerly, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences
School of Dental Medicine
Case Western Reserve University