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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


Solitary Neurofibroma of the Hard Palate: A Case Report and Literature Review

Rare disease

Takaharu Taketomi, Ken Nakamura, Yui Teratani, Katsuhisa Matsuo, Jingo Kusukawa

Japan Dental and Oral Medical Center, Kurume University School of Medicine, Kurume, Fukuoka, Japan

Am J Case Rep 2021; 22:e929674

DOI: 10.12659/AJCR.929674

Available online: 2021-01-14

Published: 2021-02-22


BACKGROUND: Neurofibromas are benign tumors of neurological origin caused by the proliferation of Schwann cells and fibroblasts; they often occur in the skin and nerves as a symptom of von Recklinghausen disease. Solitary neurofibromas are also known to occur on their own, but solitary development in the hard palate is extremely rare and difficult to distinguish from schwannomas. The neural origin of solitary neurofibromas is also difficult to determine intraoperatively, and there have been no reports that clearly identify the neural origin of neurofibromas in the hard palate.
CASE REPORT: We report a case of a solitary neurofibroma originating in the hard palate in a 24-year-old woman. She presented to our department with a 1.2×0.8-cm dome-shaped left palate mass. After identification of the nerve at the source, the tumor was resected under general anesthesia. Histopathology was positive for S-100 and CD34 immunostaining, as well as for Alcian blue. Eventually, the mass was diagnosed as a neurofibroma.
CONCLUSIONS: Solitary neurofibromas originating in the hard palate are difficult to differentiate from other neoplastic lesions, especially schwannomas, based on clinical findings alone. Therefore, it is important to perform a biopsy and immunostaining of the biopsied specimens for S-100 and CD34. In neurofibromas, tumor cells are loose and delicate, often with wavy or serpentine nuclei, and S-100 protein-positive cells are sparser than in schwannomas. An overall pathological diagnosis should be made with regard to CD34, taking into account that schwannomas are CD34-negative and neurofibromas are CD34-positive.

Keywords: Neurofibroma, Palate, Hard, S100 Proteins, Schwann Cells