Stafne cysts, also known as a static bone cavity of the mandible or lingual salivary gland inclusion defect, are cortical defects near the angle of the mandible below the mandibular canal. Strictly speaking, it is not a cyst since it does not contain any fluid. It is usually an incidental finding and represents a depression in the medial aspect of the mandible filled by part of the submandibular gland or adjacent fat.
Stafne cysts are most frequently seen in middle-aged men. The estimated prevalence ranges around 0.10-0.48% 2.
Stafne cysts are thought to result from remodelling of the bone by adjacent salivary tissue and have been noted to regress following resection of the gland nearby.
They generally appear in the area between the mandibular first molar and the mandibular angle 6.
Plain radiograph and CT
Stafne's defect is usually discovered by chance during routine dental radiography. Radiographically, it is a well-circumscribed, monolocular, round, radiolucent defect, 1-3 cm in size, usually between the inferior alveolar nerve and the inferior border of the posterior mandible between the molars and the angle of the jaw.
CT will show a shallow defect through the medial cortex of the mandible with a corticated rim and no soft tissue abnormalities, with the exception of a portion of the submandibular gland
Its main claim to fame is that it should not be confused with other lytic lesions of the jaw.
History and etymology
They are named after Edward C Stafne an American dentist (1894-1981).
Lucent lesions of the jaw
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- 7. Campos PS, Panella J, Crusoé-Rebello IM et-al. Mandibular ramus-related Stafne's bone cavity. Dentomaxillofac Radiol. 2004;33 (1): 63-6. Pubmed citation