Wednesday, 22 May 2019 | 06:28 WIB

Doctors Discover Rare Case of Strawberry-Like Gingivitis Gum Disease

Doctors Discover Rare Case of Strawberry-Like Gingivitis Gum Disease (dailymail)

TEHERAN, NETRALNEWS.COM - Doctors in Iran were shocked when a woman came to a clinic with her teeth surrounded by swollen gums that grew large and red like strawberries. In a case report from the New England Journal of Medicine, the 42-year-old woman from Iran visited a dermatologist and complained about worsening mouth pain.

She said her gums had been swollen for six weeks before her visit to the doctor. The woman also claimed to experience repeated nosebleeds and boils on her face.

That's when the doctors noticed the granular appearance of the woman's gums and diagnosed it with a condition called 'strawberry gingivitis'. This condition indicates that gum tissue grew around the teeth, usually known as gingival hyperplasia.

This is usually caused by poor oral hygiene or as a side effect of certain drugs, such as anti-seizure drugs or immunosuppressants. In most cases, improvement in oral hygiene resolves gingival hyperplasia.

But if the underlying cause is due to medication, surgery may be needed. However, the condition of the unnamed woman has developed in such a way that it has developed into a rare form known as strawberry gingivitis.

Doctors soon discovered that the underlying cause was granulomatosis with polyangiitis (GPA), which is a rare disease in which the body's immune system attacks blood vessels. Blood flow to several organs such as the nose, sinuses and kidneys slows down, which causes an area of ​​inflammation called developing granuloma.

As quoted from Daily Mail, scientists were not sure what caused it, but believe it might be triggered by an infection or virus, according to the National Organization for Rare Disorders.

If left untreated, the disorder can cause serious and permanent damage, such as changing the shape of the nose or kidney failure.

Dr Maryam Ghiasi, one of the doctors who treated the woman at Tehran University of Medical Sciences in Iran, said the scan showed no signs of disease in her sinuses. However, the team found antibodies that are characteristic of health problems in her body and also some nodules in the woman's lungs.

"Strawberry gingivitis is a rare manifestation of granulomatosis with polyiitis, and its clinical presentation strongly indicates this disease," she wrote in a case report.

Dr. Ghiasi said patients received cyclophosphamide, which suppresses the immune system, and prednisolone, a steroid that treats inflammation. But the woman never returned for control and follow-up, so the team did not know whether her condition improved or if she received further treatment.

To note, vascular disease can be treated if caught early, but if not, can be fatal. Make sure your mouth is checked, not only for cavities, not only for gum disease, but also a thorough examination, because there are many things that can be detected first in the mouth that might be missed.