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Angular cheilitis and Hiv
Sep 26, 2012

Hello Dr. Lisa,

I was wondering if you could tell me about Angular cheilitis? I understand this is not a symptom of hiv but would you say it is seen more in early or late stage hiv when it does occur?

I don't have any exposures that I know of and the last time I tested for hiv, 2010, I was negative and have been in a monogomous relationship since then. I guess my concern is that my Angular cheilitis seems reoccurent and only effects the left side of my mouth? Is there any reason Angular cheilitis would only effect one side of the mouth and not the other. Actually to be honest it seems like this occurs most often after I shave. Do you have any ideas?

Response from Dr. Hightow-Weidman

Hello there- Angular chelitis is not uncommon and while can occur in HIV infected persons (typically related to a candidal fungal infection), it can occur in HIV-infected persons as well. While typically bilateral, angular chelitis can occur on one side only perhaps related to some minor trauma during shaving. Although the sores of angular cheilitis may become infected by the fungus Candida albicans (thrush), or other pathogens, studies have linked the initial onset of angular cheilitis with nutritional deficiencies, namely riboflavin (vitamin B2)and iron deficiency anemia,which in turn may be evidence of poor diets or malnutrition. Zinc deficiency has also been associated with angular cheilitis. I would talk with your dr about this and make sure your diet is well-balanced. Take care, LHW



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