Digestive Disorders / Gastroenterology Expert Forum
Chronic thrush
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Chronic thrush


  I have suffered from a chronic thrush for 8 months now. I have been on repeated courses of nystatin, diflucan, and mycelex trouches. The Doctor's don't understand what is wrong here.
  I suffered from chronic sinusitis and was on several courses of antibiotcs for years, and I was getting thrush a lot during that time. I have been off the antibiotics for 10 months now, but every week my tongue gets coated with the yellow, whitish candida. I scrape it off and try to treat it that way and I will use my Mycelex, but sure enough, it comes back by the next week.
  I am not really on any medication regularly, but when I take Tums, it seems to bring it out. Also, when I go out once every few weeks with the guys and have a few beers, I wake up with a very coated tongue.
  Do you have any idea what could be causing this chronic coated tongue? It's causing me a great deal of concern and stress.
  Thank you very much!
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Dear Bob,
I am sorry that you are stressed about the "chronic thrush".  I am certain that your physicians are investigating all the possible cayses for recurrent thrush.  Has candida been seen in the scrapings?  This question is asked because not all white tongues are thrush.
Sometimes, the white plaques represent excessive cell turnover in the tongue, a benign condition.  Scraping the tongue can remove this surface coating.  
Chemical burns, lichen planus and drug reactions can also cause a white tongue. Chemical burns can be due to contact with agents like aspirin or mouthwash using undiluted hydrogen peroxide or sodium perborate. Removal of the slough leaves a raw, painful surface. These lesions heal in several weeks if they do not become secondarily infected.
Lichen planus is a benign condition that may be associated with skin lesions. Lichen planus may occur due to a drug reaction or be idiopathic (no etiology is identified.)
Drug reactions can occur due to almost any drug. Common culprits are tranquilizers, oral contraceptives and antimalarials.
Sometimes no obvious cause for the white tongue is found.  A scraping or biopsy can be obtained and examined under the microscope. This information may help make a diagnosis or at the very least rule out some serious diseases.
Finally, there is no evidence of which I am aware that Tums or the occasional beer causes Candida infection.
This information is presented for educational purposes only.  Always consultr your personal physician for specific medical issues.
HFHSM.D.-sg
*keywords: tongue, thrush, Candida
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