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Leukoplakia is a white spot on the surface of mucous membranes

Leukoplakia affects the mucous membranes. It causes keratinization of varying degrees of severity. The disease, in itself, is very treatable if it is detected in time. May appear in both men and women. There are also manifestations in children.


Leukoplakia - focal chronic inflammation of the mucous membrane, accompanied by a different degree of keratinization of the epithelium

Types of leukoplakia

Leukoplakia occurs in several species. With flat leukoplakia, the mucous membrane becomes turbid. The turbidity is similar to a pale film, but it is not removed with a cotton swab or when it is scraped. The surface of the mucosa becomes dry. When verrux is leukoplakia, white plaques or grayish growths a few millimeters in height appear. Erosive leukoplakia is characterized by the appearance of cracks and erosion on the affected areas. There may be pain.

There is also a variety of diseases, such as Tappayner's leukoplakia (or smoker's leukoplakia). In this case, all soft palate whitens and completely bumps. The disease quickly passes, if time passes therapy and quit smoking. Leukoplakia of the oral cavity most often appears before the development of a cancerous tumor, so it is necessary to take measures in the most urgent order.

Also the disease can appear on the tongue. Leukoplakia of the tongue is manifested in the same way as in any part of the mouth. White "film" and plaques can appear on either side of the tongue, although they usually appear on its back. If the disease passes without complications and does not become a cause of tumors after removal of lesions, it is called simple leukoplakia. But all the same, patients are recommended for some time to be observed at the doctor, in time to detect abnormal cell growth.

Leukoplakia most often appears on the oral mucosa, although there are other cases. Thus, with leukoplakia of the cervix, the multilayered epithelium is affected. This may be accompanied by a leucorrhoea, but on the whole the disease is initially asymptomatic. Leukoplakia of the vulva is much more pronounced. There is a cornification of multilayered epithelium, whitish plaques appear, a woman complains of itching and burning on the external genitalia. Leukoplakia of the labia may occur with the vulgar vulgaris. Skin covers with krauroze become thinner, gradually lose pigmentation and become easily rubbed. There is also an itch, almost permanent, worse at night. When leukoplakia affects the bladder, its walls are covered with cornified flat epithelium, which does not protect against urine. There is a chronic inflammation. This disease in women is much more common than among males.

cervical leukoplakia

Also leukoplakia can affect the cervix

In men, leukoplakia can also occur on the external genitalia. Leukoplakia of the penis is a fairly rare disease. He is more likely to have people with diabetes. Also, this disease is considered precancerous, and it can not be categorically triggered. There is a disease in the form of whitish spots with raised edges on the mucous membrane. Leukoplasia of the esophagus usually occurs as a consequence of heartburn, mucosal burns. It leads to half the cases of esophageal cancer.

Doctors also produce fibrous leukoplakia. This type of disease is a sign of HIV infection. Hairy (or hairy) leukoplakia is caused by the Epstein-Barr virus, which develops against the background of immunodeficiency. The difference between the hairy leukoplakia is the possible presence of whitish outgrowths on lesions that resemble hair. This disease usually manifests itself in the tongue (hairy leukoplakia of the tongue), with one or both sides. Sometimes hairy leukoplakia can be localized on the cheek. Defeat of this kind, as a rule, is not painful.

If leukoplakia manifested itself during pregnancy, then there is no need to panic. Stress and nerve strain can have a bad effect on the development of the fetus. But the leukoplakia itself does not harm the bearing and development of a future child. The problem is different. During pregnancy, the body of a woman can be susceptible to the growth of various formations, and it is often possible to identify leukoplakia only at a routine examination with a gynecologist. So the visits should be regular.

Leukoplakia can appear in both adults and children. Among children occurs between the ages of 5 to 15 years. And almost always a consequence of chronic mechanical trauma, and is called - soft leukoplakia. Such damage can cause the habit of biting your lips and cheeks, for example, when the child is nervous. It appears in the form of keratinized scales in the oral cavity.

Symptoms, causes and diagnosis of leukoplakia

As it was written earlier, the main symptom of leukoplakia is whitish spots and plaques. These parts of the lesion corneate and become dry. But such symptoms can be found independently, only if they appear in the oral cavity or on the external genitalia. If leukoplakia of the bladder develops, then it can be identified only through research. But most patients complained of frequent urination and pain. Leukoplakia of the cervix is ​​also almost impossible to detect without examination. But if it appears together with other diseases, it usually creates itching, pain in the process and after sexual intercourse, as well as secretions that have an unpleasant smell.

If leukoplakia began to develop on the penis, whitish spots first appear in the area of ​​the external orifice of the urethra. Usually the affected surface is smooth, but cracks may appear. Patients often complain of difficulty urinating. This is due to the narrowing of the urethra with the warty form of the disease.

Usually, leukoplakia appears in men over the age of 30 years. The consequence of neglected leukoplakia can be cancer of the penis. For advice on the appearance of anxiety symptoms, you should contact a urologist or andrologist.

In children, mild leukoplakia can be of two types: typical and atypical. In a typical form, lesions are painless and usually lie along the line of teeth on the cheeks or lips. But with the atypical form of soft leukoplakia, lesions can spread throughout the oral cavity.

There are quite a lot of reasons for the development of leukoplakia of the oral cavity. For example, alcohol, especially strong and in uncontrolled quantities. It irritates the mucous membrane, as does smoking. The resins contained in cigarettes contribute not only to irritation of the mucous membrane, but also support the inflammatory process. Too sharp, salty, spicy food also contributes to the disruption of the integrity of the mucosa, not only in the oral cavity, but also lower in the esophagus.

An equally likely cause of the disease may be a side effect of medications, as well as poor-quality dental crowns and sharp edges of teeth that damage the integrity of the oral mucosa. In the risk zone are people with HIV, anemia, diabetes mellitus and with problems in the digestive tract (gastrointestinal tract).

The causes of the development of leukoplakia of the bladder can be: diseases of neighboring organs, promiscuous sex life, endocrine system diseases, hypothermia.


The bladder leukoplakia is the process of formation on its mucous pathological epithelial plaques

To the development of leukoplakia of the vulva can also cause many reasons. Usually it is a sign of chronic inflammation. Also, the disease contributes to impaired metabolism (including due to obesity), permanent trauma to the vulvar mucosa, vitamin A deficiency.

In addition, it is not recommended to disregard the rules of personal hygiene, this is fraught not only with leukoplakia, but also with a number of other unpleasant diseases. In the risk zone are women over 40, due to a malfunction in the hormonal balance of the body, which is associated with age-related changes.

The uterine leukoplakia usually develops after the transfer of infectious and inflammatory processes. Also, the cause can be physical and chemical damage to the cervix (such as during surgery during abortion, etc.).

To properly diagnose leukoplakia, a visual inspection is first performed. The doctor makes an anamnesis and then makes a biopsy (takes a sample from the affected area of ​​the mucous membrane). A biopsy is performed under local anesthesia, so that the patient does not feel any pain at all. Further in the laboratory, the material is examined by cytological methods and then they can already make an accurate diagnosis.

Such methods are good for leukoplakia of the oral cavity and external genital organs. When diagnosing leukoplakia, the vulva also conduct a Schiller test with Lugol's solution. The zones of lesions of leukoplakia are not stained and become clearly visible. A smear on the microflora and oncocytology is also conducted.

For diagnosis of leukoplakia, cervical uteri are examined by mirrors. Then, scraping and biopsy from the cervix are taken and a cytological examination is performed. To exclude cervical cancer, doctors conduct scraping of the cervical canal. And the Schiller test reveals iodonegative sites.

Children's mild leukoplakia should be distinguished from red flat lichen and candidal stomatitis. For diagnosis, a very detailed medical history is needed to understand when the exacerbations of the disease occur and how it can be caused.

Treating the disease

In order to cure leukoplakia, first you need to get rid of the source of irritation of the mucous membrane. For example, to treat leukoplakia of the oral cavity, it may be necessary to smooth the tooth or replace (repair) the crown, prosthesis, etc. If the disease is caused by smoking, then it must be minimized or switched to other tobacco products. Of course, the best option in this case will be a complete cessation of smoking. If the disease is not started, after eliminating the source of irritation, the foci of the disease must pass by themselves. If this does not happen, the affected areas are removed surgically. But fibrotic leukoplakia should be treated with antiviral drugs.

Treatment of leukoplakia of the bladder entirely depends on the stage of the disease. First, the disease can be completely eliminated medically. The doctor prescribes several groups of drugs for complex effects on the affected areas. These are antibiotics, immunocorrectors and restorative drugs (tablets and injections may be prescribed). To avoid damage to the walls of the urinary bladder from urine, it is irrigated with drugs that repair the damaged epithelium. If the therapeutic treatment did not help, then you have to use a surgical procedure. In the bladder, a cytoscope equipped with a camera is inserted through the urethra and the affected areas are cut using a special loop.

surgery for leukoplakia

It is not always possible to avoid surgical intervention when treating leukoplakia

As a rule, both therapeutic and surgical treatment (or radio-wave destruction) are used to treat leukoplakia of the cervix. Drugs strengthen the immune system and treat associated illnesses. Also, the foci of the disease are removed by one of the appropriate methods. If leukoplakia occurs with another disease of internal genital organs (hypertrophy, kraurosis, etc.), then it can go to the amputation of the cervix.

When treating leukoplakia of the vulva, it is necessary to take into account the accompanying diseases and the age of the patient. In addition to drug therapy, physiotherapy is carried out and a diet is prescribed. Diet, mainly milk and vegetable. Special hygienic procedures are carried out (for example, syringing), the source of mucosal irritation must be eliminated. If all this does not help, or the disease has developed too much, then surgical intervention is required. In extreme cases of development of leukoplakia of the vulva, vulvar extirpation is performed (excision of female external genitalia).

The main method of treating leukoplakia in men is the operating one. After the biopsy and research, to prevent cancer, excision of affected areas is performed. Often, circumcision of the foreskin is also performed with this. But in general, the methods and methods of treatment are selected individually for each case, taking into account the distribution zone, the severity of the disease and the biological characteristics of the organism.

To cure mild leukoplakia, you need to get rid of the habit of biting your lips, cheeks or tongue. To prevent infection of the affected areas, rinse your mouth with antiseptics. The doctor can prescribe vitamin A.

Prevention of leukoplakia

To prevent leukoplakia, you must avoid bad habits, unhealthy food. It is necessary to visit doctors on a regular basis to find out the disease in time. To avoid leukoplakia of the vulva and cervix, it is necessary to treat hormonal disruptions, inflammations in the body in a timely manner. Of course, it is very important to adhere to the rules of personal hygiene.

Treatment of the disease by folk methods

To help drugs in the treatment of leukoplakia will come folk remedies. For starters, you can lubricate the affected areas with unrefined sunflower oil. They can impregnate tampons. Unrefined oil does not give a burning sensation.

The disease will facilitate the erosion of St. John's wort and marigold. The grasses need to be brewed separately and changed one with another every day.

Still a good folk remedy are potato flowers. Red or purple flowers are brewed with a glass of boiled water and cooled. Then the broth is filtered and squeezed. It must be divided into three parts and drunk three times before meals (about half an hour).


Potato flowers are often used as a folk remedy to treat leukoplakia

To treat leukoplakia, you can undergo treatment with birch tar. Take it like this: the first day - one drop, then add a drop every day until 18 days. And with 19 - reduced by one per day, until they reach zero. Tar is recommended to be pipetted. It is poured with warm milk (half a cup) and taken once a day in the morning on an empty stomach. After taking a couple of hours to lie down without moving. Then you need to have a good breakfast. Such treatment is carried out once a year.

And to replenish vitamin A in the body, it is recommended to drink half a glass of carrot juice before eating.

Do not forget that self-medication can not only not improve your condition, but also aggravate the disease, so it's best to go to the doctor. This will give an opportunity to identify and treat the disease in a qualitative and timely manner. It is necessary to remember regular visits to specialists in order to avoid complications and dangerous consequences.


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