Contact and irritant stomatitis

A. Tosti, B. M. Piraccini, A. M. Peluso

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Contact stomatitis is rather uncommon because of the relative resistance of the oral mucosa to irritant agents and allergens. The clinical manifestations of contact stomatitis are extremely variable and include erythema, erosions, ulcerations, leukoplakia-like lesions, and lichenoid reactions. Clinical signs are frequently less pronounced than subjective symptoms, and patients commonly experience severe functional problems despite only mild mucosal alterations. Allergic stomatitis is rare and almost always attributable to metallic mercury and gold salts. A careful history and an accurate examination of the oral cavity, teeth, and dental restorations are essential for a correct diagnosis. Patch testing is indicated in all lesions that are not clearly related to trauma or physical injuries. Patch testing is not useful in the burning mouth syndrome. Evaluation of clinical relevance of patch test results is always very difficult and requires an interdisciplinary approach to the patient. Successful treatment requires the identification and elimination of the causative factor, when possible. It is important to bear in mind that replacement of dental restorations and prostheses may be very expensive and stressful for the patient and thus should not be recommended when their causative role is doubtful.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)314-319
Number of pages6
JournalSeminars in cutaneous medicine and surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Dermatology


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