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A Journal on Dentistry and Maxillofacial Surgery

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Odontostomatology and Maxillofacial Surgery
Indexed/Abstracted in: CAB, EMBASE, Index to Dental Literature, PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, Emerging Sources Citation Index




Minerva Stomatologica 2000 January-February;49(1-2):41-50

language: Italian

Major aphthous stomatitis (Sutton's disease). Etiopathogenesis, histologic and clinical aspects

Burruano F., Tortorici S.


Major aphthous stomatitis (Sutton's disease) is a clinical variant of recurrent aphthous stomatitis differentiated by its high level of morbidity. It is generally found in areas of non-keratinised mucosa and is characterised by the presence of necrotic giant ulcers accompanied by intense pain. While this pathology has been the subject of molecular studies, its etiopathogenesis is still unknown. The most widely accredited hypothesis is that it represents an immune mechanism, namely the immunological response of mucosa with antigenic anomalies, modulated by altered local reactivity and influenced by triggering factors. After an extensive review of the various etiopathogenetic hypotheses, clinical and pathological aspects, the authors outline a number of therapeutic protocols including the use of topical and systemic cortisone, immunomodulators and alternative therapies like laser and ultrasound, or medications to protect the ulcers. They stress that the lack of etiopathogenetic uniformity precludes any specific treatment.

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