Difference between Benign and Malignant Lesions

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The benign lesion is a slow-growing inflammatory formation. Unless it interferes with organ functions, it is usually not life threatening. Malignant patches, on the other hand, are fast expanding lesions that are not capsulated, making them fatal to the organs. Whereas benign lesions remain isolated and increase via expansion, malignant nodules are infiltrative, a histologic trait that permits them to spread to neighboring areas by replacing tissues. Benign patches do not spread and have a sophisticated supporting structure that includes the stroma and a blood supply network. Nevertheless, this is not the case in malignant lesions, where the nodules are usually metastasizing and necrotic. The poor blood supply makes them destructive to the host. Radiological findings show benign lesions as normal tissues, whereas malignant sores appear pleomorphic and disorganized (Haschek, Rousseaux, & Wallig, 2009).

Three Common Benign Lesions

Idiopathic granulomatous mastitis

The abscess is a non-cancerous reaction to infectious substances, allergens, as well as autoimmune disorders that affect the breast such as sarcoidosis (Guray & Sahin, 2006). In some instance, the lesion can be part of the systemic immunological response.


The lesion appears on the odontogenic epithelium in later years of life, with 75% of the benign neoplasms occurring in the posterior mandible, while the rest affects maxilla (Harmon, Arrigan, Toner & O'Keeffe, 2015).

Periapical cementoma

The mandibular lesion occurs in the premolar and molar regions, where the primary causal factor is non-mineralized growth. The lesions are asymptomatic, thus, no treatment is required (Harmon, Arrigan, Toner & O'Keeffe, 2015).

Three Cancerous Lesions


While the lesion mimics infection-like inflammation where it develops without a palpable mass lesion, it is a metastasizing nodule associated with the inflammatory breast cancer(Guray & Sahin, 2006).

Necrotizing fasciitis

The swelling is caused by group A streptococci and is associated with facial swelling and fever (Harmon, Arrigan, Toner & O'Keeffe, 2015). It rapidly progresses, where the purulent gingival discharge spreads across the lower lateral teeth

Squamous cell carcinoma

The precancerous crust is a wart-like sore, primarily caused by exposure to U.V rays from sunlight or tanning lamps among individuals with fair skin.


Guray, M., & Sahin, A. A. (2006). Benign breast diseases: classification, diagnosis, and management. The oncologist, 11(5), 435-449.

Harmon, M., Arrigan, M., Toner, M., & O'Keeffe, S. A. (2015). A radiological approach to benign and malignant lesions of the mandible. Clinical radiology, 70(4), 335-350.

Haschek, W. M., Rousseaux, C. G., & Wallig, M. A. (Eds.). (2009). Fundamentals of toxicologic pathology. Academic Press.

May 17, 2023



Illness Human Body

Subject area:

Cancer Disease Blood

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