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Mouth Diseases

Black spots inside mouth

03/09/2004

Question:

What can black spots inside cheeks and on tongue be? They are sensitive and are continuing to emerge.

Answer:

It is impossible to say what is causing the "black spots" that you describe. Several medications can cause discoloration of the lining of the mouth. For some persons of color, black or brown spots may be normal, although in that setting, the spots don`t hurt. Other conditions, such as certain hormonal problems, may cause brown spots in the mouth. A benign reaction called melanoacanthosis may cause dark spots, and very rarely, cases of malignant melanoma could present in this way. I would recommend seeing an oral pathologist or someone who is familiar with oral diseases to evaluate your problem.

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Response by:

Carl M Allen, DDS, MSD Carl M Allen, DDS, MSD
Professor of Oral Pathology
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University