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Perleche vs. Angular chelietis
Aug 16, 1999

What is the difference if any between perleche and angular chelitis. About two weeks ago I noticed some cracks and redness on the left edge of my mouth, right up to the lips but the lips themselves are not cracked at all. Also, the area is very dry not moist. I was told that this was perleche not angular chelitis because the lips are not yet cracked but that it could spread. Also what exactly are the symptoms of both, is there pain, someone said it should feel painful or strained when you smile if you have either AC or perleche. By the way thank you for your great work.

Response from Dr. Reznik

Perleche is just an older name for angular cheilitis, so the symptoms and treatment would be the same. Angular cheilitis presents as a cracking or fissuring at the corners of the mouth which may or may not be accompanied by pain, depending on the extent of the cracking of the tissues. You do not have to be HIV+ to present with angular cheilitis, but is does occur more frequently in immunocompromised individuals.

Treatment for angular cheilitis or perleche usually involves the use of topical antifungal creams or ointments such as Nizoral cream, applied directly to the affected areas 4 times a day for a period of two weeks.

For pictures of angular cheilitis, please visit the HIVdent Picture Gallery located at the following URL:

Take care,


Angular Cheilitis
angular cheilitis

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