Oral and maxillofacial manifestations of familial adenomatous polyposis

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Patients with familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) develop multiple premalignant colorectal adenomas. Untreated, one or more of these polyps will progress to colorectal carcinoma in middle-aged adults. Extra-intestinal manifestations of FAP are frequently observed and this combination has been called Gardner’s syndrome. Oral and maxillofacial symptoms of FAP include an increased risk of jaw osteomas, odontomas and supernumerary or unerupted teeth. Early diagnosis of FAP is crucial and may be life saving. As oral signs usually precede gastrointestinal symptoms, the dentist may play an important role in the diagnosis of FAP.


Familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP) is an autosomal dominant syndrome, characterized by the development of innumerable adenomatous polyps in the colon and rectum. These adenomas become visible between 10 and 20 years of age and may cause rectal bleeding, diarrhoea, constipation, weight loss and/or abdominal pain.

Left untreated, inevitably one or more of these polyps will progress to colorectal carcinoma…

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