Orofacial tumours and tumour-like lesions in children treated at Muhimbili N ational Hospital, Tanzania
Introduction: Orofacial tumours and tumour-like lesions occur at any age. An increasing occurrence has made these tumours a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in children.
Objective: To determine the clinicopathological characteristics and treatment modalities of orofacial tumours and tumourlike lesions in children at Muhimbili National Hospital.
Methods: Children aged below 18 years with orofacial tumours and tumour-like lesions were interviewed using a structured questionnaire and clinically examined. The data were analysed using statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) version 20.0. Statistical significance was considered at a p-value of < 0.05.
Results: 121 children aged 4 days to 17 years (mean= 8.56 years ±5.5 SD), 52.1 % being male, participated in the study. The age groups 0-5 years (38%) and 11-15 years (28.1%) were most affected- p-value 0.38. The majority (86%) of the lesions were benign; haemangioma was the most (16.4%) common benign tumour. Dentigerous cyst was the most (7.8%) frequent tumour-like lesion observed, while Burkitt’s lymphoma and squamous cell carcinoma were the most common malignant lesions. Swelling was the most common clinical feature in all tumours and tumour-like lesions and surgery was the most common treatment.
Conclusion: Benign orofacial tumours and tumour-like lesions were the types most commonly seen among children in Tanzania.
Key words: orofacial, tumours, tumour-like lesions, children, Tanzania.