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Red tongue Assessment Questionnaire

Questions Your Doctor May Ask - and Why!

During a consultation, your doctor will use various techniques to assess the symptom: Red tongue. These will include a physical examination and possibly diagnostic tests. (Note: A physical exam is always done, diagnostic tests may or may not be performed depending on the suspected condition) Your doctor will ask several questions when assessing your condition. It is important to openly share any pertinent information to help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis.

It is also very important to bring an up-to-date list of all of your all medical conditions, medications including dosages, and names of numbers of any specialist you see.

Create your printable checklist by answering questions that your doctor may ask below:

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  1. How long have you had the red tongue?

    Why: to determine if acute or chronic.

  2. Is the tongue redness focal or diffuse?

    Why: Diffuse redness of the tongue is found in antibiotic glossitis, pernicious anemia, aphthous stomatitis, thrush and streptococcal glossitis. Focal redness of the tongue may be due to cuts and ulcerations of the tongue due to trauma (such as the bitten tongue or burned tongue) or injury from a sharp tooth or jagged dental plate. Other causes of painful focal redness of the tongue include tongue cancer, tuberculosis, syphilis (often painless) and herpes simplex ulcers.

  3. Past medical history?

    Why: e.g. pernicious anemia is associated with thyroid disease, Addison's disease and vitiligo; Vitamin B12 deficiency may be due to pernicious anemia, celiac disease or Crohn's disease.

  4. Past surgical history?

    Why: e.g. gastrectomy (removal of the stomach) and removal of the ileum (part of the small bowel) may cause Vitamin B12 deficiency.

  5. Medications?

    Why: e.g. some antibiotics may cause diffuse glossitis.

  6. Dietary history?

    Why: may indicate risk of dietary deficiencies (such as Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, B12, folate and iron) that may cause glossitis (inflammation of the tongue).

  7. Oral ulceration?

    Why: may be due to Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, celiac disease, Behcet's disease, Reiter's disease, systemic lupus erythematosus, dietary deficiencies (of iron, folic acid, Vitamin B12), mouth trauma, sharp teeth, ill-fitting dentures, syphilis or tuberculosis.

  8. Symptoms of glossitis (inflammation of the tongue)?

    Why: e.g. smooth appearance of the tongue, tongue may be red. In later stages there may be shallow ulceration. May be due to nutritional deficiency in iron, folate, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6 or Vitamin B12.

  9. Symptoms of hand, foot and mouth disease?

    Why: e.g. fever, headache, sore mouth, shallow ulcers on the lining of the mouth, gums and tongue, blisters on hands, palms and soles.

  10. Symptoms of riboflavin (Vitamin B2) deficiency?

    Why: e.g. fissuring at the corners of the mouth, red inflamed tongue, seborrheic dermatitis on face, scrotum or vagina.

  11. Symptoms of angular stomatitis?

    Why: e.g. cracks at the corners of the mouth. Possible causes may include Vitamin B6, B12, folate and iron deficiency. These dietary deficiencies may also cause glossitis (inflammation of the tongue).

  12. Symptoms of pernicious anemia (a cause of Vitamin B12 deficiency)?

    Why: e.g. glossitis (red sore tongue), angular stomatitis (cracks at the corner of the mouth), may have a lemon yellow tinge to skin (due to combination of pallor and jaundice). If the level of vitamin B12 is very low may have symmetrical numbness in the fingers and toes, progressive weakness and loss of co-ordination.

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Red tongue:

The following list of conditions have 'Red tongue' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Red tongue or choose View All.

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