In our last Stanford 25 session, Dr. Neera Ahuja led a session on the oral exam. In this session, she talked about important findings of the oral exam for the internist that include abnormal findings of the tongue, buccal mucosa and salivary glands.
A few take-home points from Dr. Ahuja include:
· A comprehensive examination of the oral cavity can provide insight into a patient’s health and possible systemic disease processes (eg. Endocarditis, Sjogren’s, Amyloid, etc).
· Recognizing normal variants is key to being able to identify abnormal exam findings
· If you are going to take the time to examine the oral cavity, have a bright pen light (or the Stanford 25 key chain light) available for maximum visibility of the oropharynx