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Oral Manifestations Persist in COVID-19 Survivors


Investigating the presence, prevalence and type of oral manifestations found in patients who had contracted COVID-19, researchers at the Università Vita Salute San Raffaele in Milan, Italy, have found the virus’ effects persist in the oral cavity far beyond clinical recovery. The study, “Frequent and Persistent Salivary Gland Ectasia and Oral Disease After COVID-19,” was published in the Journal of Dental Research.

The team profiled the oral involvement of 122 COVID-19 patients who were hospitalized, following up with a single visit after a median 104 days following discharge. Researchers note that “oral manifestations, specifically, salivary gland ectasia, were unexpectedly common,” with oral manifestations being detected in 83.9% of subjects, while salivary gland ectasia was found in 43% of recovering COVID-19 patients. Other common oral conditions noted in the study group include temporomandibular joint disorders, facial pain and masticatory muscle weakness. 

These finding suggest additional research is needed on the potential long-lasting oral consequences of COVID-19 infection.

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