History of Present Illness

This is a 20-year-old female who was in good health until approximately April 2005 when she noticed a sore on her right lateral tongue (Fig 1). She states that for the past few years she has had recurrent canker sores in this area and thought that this was just another canker sore. However, the pain persisted and by June 2005 she noticed that the lesion had increased in size to a quarter-sized red lesion on the right lateral tongue. She denies any history of bleeding, tongue mobility problems, speech difficulty, dysphagia, odynophagia, or any other symptoms associated with the lesion. The patient presented to an Oral Surgeon who performed an incisional biopsy on 06/14/2005 and sent it for microscopic evaluation; she was then referred to Dr. Futran at the University of Washington Medical Center for further treatment. The patient smokes 2 packs of cigarettes per year and consumes 5 alcoholic beverages per week.

Lateral view of the tongue.

Figure 1. This is a clinical photograph representing the lesion before the incisional biopsy.  Single and large, non-healing ulcer on the mid to posterior lateral border of the tongue.