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This 22 year old female sought routine treatment at a hospital dental clinic. In addition to numerous caries, a diffuse bluish compressible slightly elevated mass was noted in the mandibular left mucobuccal fold.

Differential Diagnosis:

  1. Hemangioma
  2. Mucocele
  3. Minor salivary gland tumor (some salivary gland tumors have a blue coloration, particularly acinic cell carcinoma. However, these salivary gland tumors tend to be more well-defined than hemagiomas.)
These are the two most likely choices due to the size of the tumor and the presence of variously sized locules.


Slide 1 (medium power, H&E). There are variously sized endothelium-lined vascular channels, some of which are filled with blood. These vessels are supported by a dense fibrous connective tissue stroma.

Diagnosis: Hemangioma, cavernous type

(This tumor did exhibit blanching upon pressure which is characteristic of cavernous hemangiomas and vascular tumors with large feeder vessels.)