Oral sores or mouth lesions may affect short-term or long-term. Diseases affecting your body and mind may contribute to oral health problems. Some oral diseases and conditions potentially affect your general health and well-being as well. As these disorders affect vital functions such as eating, drinking, talking they are detrimental to overall wellbeing.

Most oral lesions appear red and white in the oral cavity. These lesions may appear similar and confusing. Therefore you need an evaluation by a trained expert for a definitive diagnosis.

A definitive diagnosis is a foundation for a prognostic outcome. In order to provide a diagnosis, we will work up the problem in a systematic evidence-based approach. This may include doing a biopsy procedure, blood tests, or imaging. Thus, after the diagnostic process, we will be able to provide a personalized treatment plan for you.

Red and white appearance of mouth sores that need a workup for a diagnosis – Mucous membrane pemphigoid

Oral Medicine care involves the clinical management of oral pathologies, diseases, disorders, and conditions such as recurrent/ persistent mouth sores and lesions that may be caused by local or systemic conditions or that are caused by allergic reactions, autoimmune conditions, nutritional deficiency, viral or fungal infections, and even premalignant and cancerous mouth sores. The emphasis on making definitive diagnoses and providing targeted therapies are the key components.

Dr. Thoppay manages oral lichen planus, burning mouth, halitosis (bad breath), and dry mouth conditions. She also treats conditions that are caused by complications of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

At our center, we manage the following conditions including rare disorders and oral lesions.

  • Oral lesions, ulcers, blisters, infections, and precancer lesions.
  • Infections of mouth, such as thrush and cold sores
  • Oral cancer
  • Salivary gland problems and dry mouth
  • Burning mouth syndrome
  • Abnormal oral sensation
  • Allergies and drug-related reactions occurring in the mouth and facial areas
  • Oral complications of medical and skin diseases that reflect in mouth
  • Autoimmune conditions affecting oral cavity [lupus, mixed connective tissue disorders, Sjogren’s syndrome]
  • Bad breath
Oral Lichen planus affecting the tongue

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, feel free to contact us

A blistering condition affecting gums, that looks like periodontal disease

Oral Cancer

Oral and oropharyngeal cancer is on the rise every year. Mouth cancers will be newly diagnosed in about 145 new individuals each day in the US alone. Though this cancer is thought to be rare, the rates of occurrence (about 12,000 additional new cases per year) and death are significantly higher.  When diagnosed in the early stages of development, oral cancers can have an 80 to 90 % survival rate. Unfortunately, they are found as late-stage cancers on most occasions. This accounts for a very high death rate of about 43% at five years from diagnosis.

There are two ways people can risk oral and oropharyngeal cancer. One is through the long-term use of tobacco and alcohol may be a cause. The other is through exposure to the HPV-16 virus (human papillomavirus version 16)  a relatively new (since 1999) cause. This virus is also the same one that is responsible for the vast majority of cervical cancers in women. A small percentage of people (under about 10%) do get oral cancers from no currently identified cause. It is currently believed that these are likely related to genetics, nutrition, and other unidentified shared risk factors. More information is available on https://oralcancerfoundation.org/

Additional information and resources: Patient information

Advanced procedures



A thorough analysis of your saliva sample will help to precisely diagnose oral dryness and oral burning. Sialometry is a procedure that helps to analyze the saliva sample.

Tissue Biopsy

Lesions in the mouth often appear red and white. A thorough understanding of the lesion is necessary before treating the oral lesion. A biopsy is a procedure to remove a piece of tissue samples from orofacial areas to help diagnose a condition or identify cancer. This is a gold standard diagnostic procedure for a definitive diagnosis. For that, sampling the right tissues is critical. Hence it is technique sensitive.  Dr. Thoppay manages these types of lesions and rare oral disorders, hence they have extensive experience in identifying the right techniques and providing a diagnosis before attempting to treat them. She uses laser technology for patient comfort and a faster healing process.

Intralesional Injections

Intralesional therapy is the injection of a higher concentration of a titrated drug directly into chronic oral lesions without significant systemic absorption. This is helpful in the management of certain chronic oral lesions that do not respond to topical medications or for patients who cannot take systemic medications due to health concerns. It is important to know the condition before you treat the oral lesions. Dr. Thoppay will be able to choose the right methods to manage oral disorders and conditions.