Exfoliative cheilitis - Oral Mucosal Lesion
Depending on the severity of cheilitis, swelling, rhagades (fissures and cracks), erosions, and hemorrhagic crusting can occur in addition to peeling. Associated symptoms may include pruritus, tingling, pain, and difficulty with speaking or eating. Although the association is not well studied, depression and personality disorders have been reported in patients with EC.
Related topic: lip-licking dermatitis
K13.0 – Diseases of lips
235139008 – Exfoliative cheilitis
Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls
- Irritant contact dermatitis
- Allergic contact dermatitis
- Atopic dermatitis
- Actinic cheilitis – Presents with thin, scaly, whitish papules or plaques on the vermilion, more often in older males, usually lower lip is also affected; biopsy shows partial thickness epidermal dysplasia and solar elastosis.
- Cheilitis glandularis – Associated with swelling of the lower lip and draining salivary gland fluid leading to crusting. Occurs in older males and can predispose to squamous cell carcinoma (SCC); biopsy shows salivary gland hyperplasia.
- Granulomatous cheilitis – Associated peeling of the vermilion, but more commonly involves the upper lip and the predominant finding is diffuse swelling. Occurs in younger patients often in association with underlying inflammatory bowel disease; biopsy shows granulomatous inflammation.
- Candidal infection of the vermilion – Can cause erosions and crusting, often oral commissures are involved.
- Lichen planus
- Photosensitivity disorders, including lupus erythematosus