These developmental cysts are rare lesions of the nasal alar region. They grow submucosally in the anterior nasal floor, often elevating and medially displacing the inferior turbinate. They expand downward into the gingivolabial sulcus, and laterally into the soft tissue of the face.
Nasolabial cysts are usually unilateral, more common in women, usually present during the fourth and fifth decades of life, and have a predilection for the black population. They are usually painless and asymptomatic, and they are recognized only when they are acutely inflamed or large enough to cause nasal obstruction. Sometimes their size will cause flattening of the nasolabial fold. They are generally thought to be of embryonic origin, arising where nasal epithelium became trapped in the cleft formed by the fusion of the maxillary, lateral, and medial nasal processes.