Oral Candidiasis

Overview
  • Oral Candidiasis is the result of oral cavity infection with candida
Pathogenesis
  • Although candida is a normal part of the oral flora, its overgrowth, manifesting as oral candidiasis, is normally prevented by a healthy immune system. Oral candidiasis does occur in healthy individuals but only rarely. Disease is much more prevalent in immunocompromised patients including those with AIDS and Diabetes Mellitus. Oral Candidiasis is also common in those with excessive glucocorticoid levels and is thus often co-morbid with cushing syndrome. Consequently, oral candidiasis is often a heralding symptom of those with severe immune dysfunction.
Clinical Consequences
  • Oral candidiasis appears as a whitish, milk curd-like, demarcated plaque anywhere within the oral cavity. The lesion is a pseudomembrane that can be scraped off to reveal an erythematous surface underneath. The pseudomembrane itself is composed of a mixture fungal hyphae and host cells. In those with reduced immunity, untreated infection can lead to invasive candidiases (See: Candida).
Treatment
  • Topical therapy with swish-and-spit Nystatin