What's the difference between canker sores vs. sore tastebuds?

  • Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Ask the experts

Are painful inflamed tastebuds the same thing as canker sores?

Doctor's response

No. Painful inflamed tastebuds are simply painfully inflamed tastebuds. Canker sores (alias aphthous ulcers) are little ulcer craters in the lining of the mouth. Rather than being hollowed out like canker sores, the taste buds (whether inflamed or not) are raised. One goes up. The other down. Canker sores tend to be extremely painful, much more so than inflamed tastebuds. Sore tastebuds are thus not the same as canker sores. They are different.

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Reviewed on 1/11/2018