A 4-year-old boy presented with his mother to genetics in the 1980s, with a family history (FH) of macrocephaly and intellectual disability (ID). He remained undiagnosed until his mother developed multiple cancers and was diagnosed with Cowden syndrome (CS) in 2017, a rare, multisystem cancer predisposition syndrome. CS was then confirmed in multiple family members. Clinical examination revealed potentially novel features; gingival enlargement, dental abnormalities and joint hyperextensibility. These features could contribute to revised PTEN hamartoma tumour syndrome, National Comprehensive Cancer Network, minor diagnostic criteria. The paediatric CS phenotype is still emerging and features expressed in this family during childhood could potentially aid paediatric diagnosis. This case reminds clinicians to seek genetic input for PTEN testing when macrocephaly is identified alongside, a personal or FH of ID, early-onset tumours (especially breast, bowel or thyroid) or multiple tumours. Thus detailed FH is pivotal to earlier CS diagnosis and improved patient outcomes.
- dentistry and oral medicine
- genetic screening / counselling
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AS and GP are joint first authors.
Contributors AS and GP are joint first authors and wrote the manuscript. AS, TH and KRO were the consulting clinicians. TH and KRO critiqued and edited the manuscript.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Obtained.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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