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Mouth Diseases

Dry Patches of the Mouth

06/09/2010

Question:

I have dry patches of skin inside my mouth. It started years ago, but I never made a big deal out of it. A couple years ago, I was prescribed an antibiotic for a bad cold and the problem went away. Recently this year, it returned. I consulted my family doctor and he prescribed a swish and swallow liquid that didn`t work. I was referred to a dermatologist who prescribed a gel for eczema not meant for the mouth. That didn`t work either. He then took a biopsy which returned a diagnosis of "a thickening of skin". He recommended I continue use of the gel. I am extremely frustrated that neither doctors I visited could give a solution to my problem. I am convinced that all I need is an antibiotic, however, I don`t know the name of the antibiotic I was prescribed a couple of years ago. I thank you for your help.

Answer:

The sensation of "dryness" that you describe is suggestive of the condition known as burning mouth syndrome, which can be associated changes in sensation, taste or even smell. It would not be typical of any known infectious condition of the oral cavity.

Additional information about this relatively common, but annoying condition can be found at the links below.

Related Resources:

Burning Mouth / Burning Tongue Syndrome (American Academy of Oral & Maxillofacial Pathology)
Burning Mouth Syndrome

For more information:

Go to the Mouth Diseases health topic, where you can:

Response by:

John R Kalmar, DMD, PhD John R Kalmar, DMD, PhD
Clinical Professor of Pathology
Associate Dean of Dentistry Administration
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University