The general term "cheilitis" refers to an inflammatory process in the lips that may be accompanied by and be a part of other more complex systemic pathologies as in the case of Down's Syndrome, late cutaneous porphyria and Melkersson-Rosenthal Syndrome. The anatomical position of the lips makes them particularly exposed to physical phenomena (sun, wind and cold) and chemical substances (saliva, irritant and/or sensitising foods, cosmetics, odontological materials, toothpastes) which can cause irritative or allergic cheilitis. In glandular cheilitis the inflammatory process also involves the ectopic glands of the lower lip with small papules that have orifices at their centre from which drops of saliva seep. In granulomatose cheilitis a chronic asymptomatic oedema may appear in isolated form or be part of Melkersson-Rosenthal Syndrome. Plasmacellular cheilitis is the labial equivalent of Zoon's plasmacellular balanitis, and is characterised by an erythematous patch, which sometimes becomes ulcerated on the lower lips of elderly patients. The practice commonly adopted recently of applying filler implants in the labial and perioral region may cause inflammation and severe exogenous granulomatose cheilitis. Sometimes cheilitis can be an indication of systemic disease. It is seen for example in 6% of Down's Syndrome cases; characterised by dryness, vertical cracking, peeling and scabbing that could be the result of traumas or recurrent infections, the real cause is unknown. Given the position of the lips, early diagnosis and rapid treatment are essential for the achievement of the best aesthetic and functional results.
|Translated title of the contribution||Non neoplastic diseases of the lips|
|Title of host publication||Journal of Plastic Dermatology|
|Number of pages||5|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 2006|
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