4 Things You Need To Know About Chronic Hyperplastic Candidiasis

Dentist Blog

Chronic hyperplastic candidiasis is a type of oral candidiasis, also known as oral thrush or yeast. It's caused by an overgrowth of a fungi that's naturally present inside your mouth, Candida albicans. Here are four things you need to know about chronic hyperplastic candidiasis.

Why does the yeast overgrow?

Candida albicans is a natural part of your oral flora, but it's also an opportunistic fungi. This means that it's harmless until something changes inside your mouth that gives it the chance to grow and divide, but as soon as it gets the opportunity, it will overgrow and lead to disease. Lots of factors can give Candida albicans the opportunity it needs, but chronic hyperplastic candidiasis tends to be associated with immunological disorders like HIV infection or endocrine disorders like diabetes. 

What are the signs of chronic hyperplastic candidiasis?

The main sign of chronic hyperplastic candidiasis is a white patch on your oral tissues. This patch tends to develop in the corners of your mouth, but it can develop on other oral sites like on the insides of your cheeks or on your tongue. The patch will be firm with a leathery texture, and you won't be able to rub it away like can be done with other types of oral candidiasis. This is because the fungi deeply invade the affected oral tissues, rather than remaining on its surface. 

Is it serious?

Chronic hyperplastic candidiasis is a very serious type of candidiasis. Studies have shown that it has a very high risk of malignant transformation. One study found that six out of 10 lesions later progressed to oral squamous cell carcinoma, while another study reported that two out of three lesions made this transformation.

This type of candidiasis is dangerous because it penetrates deeper into your oral tissues than other types, allowing to further damage your cells. Researchers have many theories as to how Candida albicans causes cancer, but one theory is that the fungi is able to produce carcinogens.

How is this infection treated?

A number of treatments are available for chronic hyperplastic candidiasis. Your dentist may prescribe a topical antifungal medication, though since the infection is not just superficial, you may need more intensive treatment. Your dentist may need to give you systemic antifungals to allow the medication to reach hard-to-reach fungi deep within your tissues.

In addition to treatment with antifungal medications, this type of candidiasis generally requires excision. Your white patches will be cut away with either a scalpel or a laser and then sewn shut. Larger patches may require skin grafts. Since cancer may develop in these treated areas, your dentist may recommend regular oral cancer screenings.

For more information, contact Buffalo Dental Group or a similar organization.


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