Tongue, Hairy

National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

Important
It is possible that the main title of the report Tongue, Hairy is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.

Synonyms

  • Black Hairy Tongue
  • Lingua Nigra
  • Black Tongue
  • Lingua Villosa Nigra

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Hairy tongue is an uncommon, benign condition that is also known as black hairy tongue or lingua nigra. It is characterized by abnormal elongation and blackish or dark brownish discoloration or "staining" of the thread-like elevations (filiform papillae) that cover most of the tongue's surface (dorsum linguae). Such changes often begin at the back (posterior) region of the top of the tongue and extend toward the front (anterior) of the tongue's surface but never involve the undersurface.

The specific underlying cause of hairy tongue is unknown. However, possible predisposing factors may include poor oral hygiene and overgrowth of pigment-producing bacteria or fungi in the mouth, treatment with certain antibiotic medications, smoking, chewing tobacco, and/or mouthwash use.
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Resources

Smell and Taste Center
University of Pennsylvania
5 Ravdin Building
3400 Spruce Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Tel: (215)662-6580
Fax: (215)349-5266
Email: helene.katz@uphs.upenn.edu
Internet: http://www.med.upenn.edu/stc

NIH/National Oral Health Information Clearinghouse
1 NOHIC Way
Bethesda, MD 20892-3500
USA
Tel: (301)402-7364
Fax: (301)907-8830
TDD: (301)656-7581
Email: nohic@nidcr.nih.gov
Internet: http://www.nohic.nidcr.nih.gov

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
TDD: (888)205-3223
Email: ordr@od.nih.gov
Internet: http://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/Default.aspx

For a Complete Report

For a Complete Report

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc. ® (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be obtained for a small fee by visiting the NORD website. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational treatments (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, see http://www.rarediseases.org/search/rdblist.html

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