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Dr. Ben
Dr. Ben, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 1020
Experience:  GP Partner, practicing Medicine for 14 years. I have broad experience with special interests in Dermatology, Paediatrics, Sexual Health and Oncology.
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I'm concerned about my mouth area, I've seen a nurse and a

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Hi I'm concerned about my mouth area, I've seen a nurse and a dentist and thought I'd get some advice as I'm worried
Assistant: Have you noticed any recent swelling? Do you have any tooth pain?
Customer: Only small lumps no tooth pain, just sensitive a little on one of them
Assistant: Anything else in your medical history you think the doctor should know?
Customer: I had three mri scans on my brain but were clean in the end

Hello, thank you for your question. I’m Dr. Ben and I’m here to assist you today. Please allow me a few moments to review your question and I’ll be right back.

If you receive an invitation for a phone call, please know this is automatically generated by the site and has not come from me. Feel free to ignore it.

Please can you elaborate on the problem for me?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I've had a mouth ulcer for over a month, it goes up in swelling when I eat certain foods, it popped I think tonight and now has gone down again, I've got cream for it but is irritating still. The roof of my mouth is white a little but it's symmetrical, I've been told a lot of people have that. I have noticed my uvela and area around it and tonsils are a bit inflamed and red and have small red lumps around the area. Also feels like I have a lot of phlem at back of throat etc. I don't have any pain and no bleeding, no numbness or throat lumps. My worry is mouth cancer, I don't smoke and hardly drink and I'm 22. I have been told to take thrush medication for a week but can't see it being that. The dentist I saw said my mouth wasn't a concern and the ulcer wasn't very noticeable.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Sorry there are the extra info

Okay, I understand, thank you.

Are you able to upload some pictures of the affected area(s) for me to review please?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I'd like to think the dentist knows what to look for, the nurse worried me because she said if the ulcer was around others she'd refer me urgently, I'd like to think an ulcer that goes down in swelling then comes back is less harmful than one which stays and just gets bigger
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I'll do that now thank you
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Sorry its taking a while
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
There are several photos
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
apologies the system isn't making it easy to send the different ones, think they might be OK though

That’s great, thank you.

Reviewing them now...

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Thank you, ***** ***** that easy with a phone in the mirror
Customer: replied 4 months ago.

They are good quality photos, I can see the problem areas very clearly - thank you.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Ah OK thanks
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I also had an xray of my teeth and that was fine too

Like you say, the throat area looks a little inflamed (and the small bumps on the mucosal surface are a part of this) and there is a shallow ulceration to the palate.

I honestly do not have any concerns at all about cancer based on these appearances and the information you have kindly provided.

I do believe that something has caused some irritation to the mouth/throat, though it is difficult to be certain exactly what this might be. Thrush is extremely common and definitely can cause these issues so it is a sensible thing to take some empiric treatment for. Other possibilities include respiratory tract viruses and food irritation/allergy.

Does this help?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Thank you for the information, I understand a lot of patients tend to think worse case even if I may not have high risk. Would typical cancer symptoms be a lot worse within the mouth area? I wasn't sure if thrush was able to produce lumps in the mouth I thought it was different.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
As I mentioned the dentist I saw has been doing it for over 30 years and I'd like to think he knows what to look for

Yes, cancers would have a significantly different appearance to this and I do agree with you about the dentist too.

The ulcer has the typical appearance of an aphthous ulcer - these are harmless and take around 10-14 days to fully heal.

When a mucosal surface (such as the lining of the mouth/throat) is inflamed, it frequently will form bumps as part of that process. Thrush causes inflammation when it is present so can lead to bumps in this manner.

Is there anything else you would like to ask me?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Ah OK, my ulcer has been present for over a month though, could it have not gone fully due to it being irritated by certain foods? Also is thrush able to get just through the air as me and my partner are both clean sexually?
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Thank you for the help I appreciate it

Yes, there is likely to be some ongoing irritation that is delaying the healing then. It could be from food, but thrush can also cause this.

Thrush is caused by a yeast called candida which is in the mouth anyway. Sometimes it just overgrows - there doesn’t have to be a reason for this, but it frequently will occur following antibiotics or if someone is prone to dry mouth etc. It is not usually something that is transmitted from person to person.

I suggest treating for thrush and if that doesn’t clear things up then to obtain some steroid lozenges (hydrocortisone buccal tablets, 2.5mg four times daily for 5 days) from your doctor/dentist - these will help to settle things down for you.

Is that okay?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
thank you Ben, it's appreciated, I think it's easy to assume the worst when it could be something simple. I hope you have a good evening and thank you, I'll continue to take my thrush treatment and see how it goes for a week :)

It is natural to worry, nothing to feel guilty about.

I wish you all the best.

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