How are oral lesions treated?

The treatment of oral lesions involves the following steps:
The treatment of oral lesions involves the following steps:
  • Diagnosis is usually made on clinical grounds with laboratory testing.
  • Predisposing factors should be treated or eliminated where feasible.
  • Good oral hygiene is important. Oral hygiene should include daily cleaning of the teeth, buccal cavity, tongue, and dentures.
  • Topical antifungals given for 2 weeks are usually effective for uncomplicated oral candidiasis.
  • Systemic antifungals should be given to patients intolerant to topical antifungals.
  • Antiviral therapy should be given to patients with oral lesions of a viral cause.

What are the common oral lesions found?

Oral lesions are a public health challenge globally. The most common oral lesions include:

  • Oral candidiasis: It is a localized infection and are of three types:
    • Pseudomembranous/Thrush: This type is characterized by white plaques that can be wiped off.
    • Erythematous: A roughly symmetric red lesion in the tongue along with a burning sensation.
    • Perleche or angular cheilitis: It involves inflammation and small cracks in one or both corners of the mouth.
  • Recurrent herpes labialis: Reactivation of infection with herpes simplex virus after an initial infection leads to recurrent herpes labialis. Reactivation occurs due to some of the trigger factors.
  • Recurrent aphthous stomatitis: It is characterized by a small, shallow sore inside the mouth or at the base of the gum. These sores may be recurring and painful.
  • Erythema migrans: It is a large rash measuring about 2-212 inch. These rashes expand gradually. Some patients may complain of pain or burning while eating spicy food.
  • Hairy tongue: A temporary condition where the tongue appears dark and furry.
  • Lichen planus: It is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects mucous membranes inside your mouth.

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Gonsalves GC, Chi AC, Neville BW. Common Oral Lesions: Part I. Superficial Mucosal Lesions. Am Fam Physician. February 15, 2007;75(4):501-506.

Akpan A, Morgan R. Oral candidiasis. Postgrad Med J. 2002;78:455-459.