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This painless, hard mass was noted on the palate of a 73-year-old woman with hypertension during a routine follow-up visit. The mass had been present for more than 30 years.
Torus palatinus is a benign developmental exostosis of the palate. The prevalence in the United States is about 20%, and it is more common in females.1 The cause is unknown; it is believed to be multifactorial.2,3
Most affected patients are asymptomatic, and only reassurance is needed. Ulcers can develop from repeated trauma, however. Surgery is required if a torus palatinus becomes too large and interferes with the fabrication of dentures or any other prosthesis.4 ■
1. Kolas S, Halperin V, Jefferis K, et al. The occurrence of torus palatine and torus mandibularis in 2478 dental patients. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol. 1953;6:1134-1141.
2. Haugen LK. Palatine and mandibular tori. A morphologic study in the current Norwegian population. Acta Odontol Scand. 1992;50:65-77.
3. Reichart PA, Neuhaus F, Sookasem M. Prevalence of torus palatinus and torus mandibularis in Germans and Thai. Community Dent Oral Epidemiol. 1988;16:61-64.
4. Woo JK. Torus palatinus. Am J Phys Anthropol. 1950;8:81-111