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Cysts of the Oral Mucosa in Newborns

Edmund Cataldo, DDS, MS; Milton D. Berkman, DMD
Am J Dis Child. 1968;116(1):44-48. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1968.02100020046006.
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CLINICALLY evident cysts of the alveolar and palatal mucosa are apparently a very common finding in newborns and infants and are often referred to as Epstein's pearls or Bohn's nodules. The cystic lesions have been described as white, raised, multiple nodules of maxillary and mandibular alveolar ridges and midpalatal region varying in size from a pin head to 2 or 3 mm. The majority of these cysts are inconspicuous and usually only the larger lesions are noticed. No treatment of these lesions is required as they do not interfere with tooth eruption and usually disappear in a few months.

Palatal mucosal cysts of fetuses and infants have been studied in detail by several investigators.1-3 Monteleone and McLellan1 found 79% to 85% of 393 1-day-old infants had cystic nodules in the median palatine raphe at the junction of hard and soft palates and histologic examination revealed cysts containing keratin. Burke


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