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Article: Volume 42 Number 6 Page 564 - July/August 2015

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  Dent Update 2015; 42: 564-572

Oral medicine:  Management of Recurrent Aphthous Stomatitis in Children

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Abstract: Recurrent oral ulceration is common and may present in childhood. Causes of recurrent oral ulceration are numerous and there may be an association with underlying systemic disease. Recurrent aphthous stomatitis (RAS) is the most common underlying diagnosis in children. The discomfort of oral ulcers can impact negatively on quality of life of a child, interfering with eating, speaking and may result in missed school days. The role of the general dental practitioner is to identify patients who can be treated with simple measures in primary dental care and those who require assessment and treatment in secondary care. Management may include topical agents for symptomatic relief, topical corticosteroids and, in severe recalcitrant cases, systemic agents may be necessary.

Clinical relevance: Children and young people frequently suffer from recurrent oral ulceration; with recurrent aphthous stomatitis being the most common diagnosis.

Author notes: Jodie A Montgomery-Cranny, BDS(Hons), BSc(Hons), MBCHB(Hons), Specialty Registrar in Oral Medicine, Ann Wallace, BDS, MFDS RCS(Edin), Specialty Registrar in Paediatric Dentistry, Helen J Rogers, BDS, MFDS RCS(Edin), DipConSed, Academic Clinical Fellow in Paediatric Dentistry, Sophie C Hughes, BDS, MFDS RCS(Edin), Dental Core Trainee in Paediatric Dentistry, Anne M Hegarty, MSc(OM), MBBS, MFD RCSI, FDS(OM) RCS, Consultant and Honorary Senior Clinical Lecturer, Oral Medicine Unit and Halla Zaitoun, BDS(Hons) MFDS, MPaedDent, MDentSci, FDS(Paed Dent), Consultant in Paediatric Dentistry, Charles Clifford Dental Hospital, Sheffield, S10 2SZ, UK.

Objective: To highlight predisposing factors for the development of RAS and clarify the management of RAS in children and young people.