Angina Plaut-Vincenta, also known as acute necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis, is now a very rare disease.
The distinctive nickname in English (“trenchmouth”) derives from the fact that it once referred to soldiers in the trenches, due to the unhealthy conditions and habits they had to endure during the war.
It manifests itself as an acute and painful infection in which the gums bleed due to necrosis and general inflammation in the mouth. According to research, nowadays it is a disease usually associated with AIDS. This is because acquired immunodeficiency causes oral disease in 90% of these patients.
Angina Plaut-Vincent and its causes
Angina Plaut-Vincenta is a painful form of gingivitis. The changes induced by them are related to the bacterial species Bacillus fusiformis and Borrelia vincentii. However, they are not the only microorganisms responsible for this condition.
According to scientific research, there are four zones in the affected region:
- The bacterial zone is a large mass of bacteria with different morphology and characteristics. They are not necessarily harmful at first, but their excessive proliferation causes disease.
- A zone rich in neutrophils, leukocytes and one of the first in which infectious foci are formed. Among other things, oil is released here.
- The necrotic zone is where cells die. The spirochetes dominate here, a type of bacteria with an elongated, spiral shape.
- The spirochete multiplies in the last layer, which is no longer inhabited by other types of bacteria.
According to the US National Library of Medicine, factors that can trigger bacterial overgrowth that cause a kick in the mouth include stress, poor oral hygiene, smoking, malnutrition, and a weak immune system.
To learn more: Gingivitis – Fight It With 5 Natural Remedies!
What are the symptoms of a trench mouth?
The MSD manual states that infection usually begins suddenly, with gum pain and bleeding, and excessive salivation. Some of the most common clinical symptoms are as follows:
- Bad breath, with an unpleasant odor.
- Crater-like ulcers between the teeth.
- Unpleasant aftertaste in the mouth felt by the patient himself (some people refer to it as a metallic aftertaste).
- A grayish coating on the gums that appear red and are bleeding.
Due to these symptoms, it will be difficult for you to carry out common activities such as talking, eating and swallowing. The lymph nodes in the neck also often become enlarged in response to an infection (lymphadenopathy).
Given the difficulty of eating normally and living a normal life, other common complications include weight loss, dehydration, and tooth loss. Bacteria can enter the bloodstream if a person with the condition ignores these clinical signs, leading to bacteremia.
The spread of the infection can be devastating as it affects many organs. In addition, septic shock may occur. It happens when the body overreacts and blood pressure drops.
As the research portal Drugs points out, a physical examination is the first step to detecting Plaut-Vincent angina. The professional will look for ulcers, grayish coatings around the teeth and destruction of gum tissue. Diagnosis is usually quick and there is no room for confusion.
Your doctor may need blood tests and x-rays. The latter is used to assess the degree of damage caused by infection, since the extent of the lesions is difficult to assess by eye. The approach will depend on the severity of the clinical picture.
When to seek medical help
Each type of gingivitis requires medical intervention, and not all of them are caused by infections. However, you need to exclude the disease in a timely manner.
Angina Plauta-Vincenta can worsen significantly if not tackled in time as bacteria can enter the bloodstream.
Available methods of treating Plaut-Vincent angina
According to the health portal Siegfried Rhein, the goal of treatment is to cure the infection and relieve symptoms. People can do this with antibiotics, but the main pillars of treating this disease include:
- Professional cleaning, slowly and thoroughly, over the next few days. This disease usually responds well to deep oral hygiene.
- The patient should periodically rinse their mouths at home with salt water or a solution of hydrogen peroxide.
- Doctors usually advise against brushing your teeth due to the fragility of the mouth caused by the disease. After rinsing and cleaning, however, they need to brush them regularly for the rest of their lives to prevent recurrence.
Preventing the disease is simple. It is based on good nutrition, proper oral hygiene and regular dental check-ups. Experts also recommend that patients stay active and quit smoking.
In addition, Plaut-Vincent angina has an important psychological component, as in many cases it is associated with stress. For this reason, patients sometimes need to seek help outside the field of pharmacology to deal with psychological problems.
Angina Plaut-Vincenta almost disappeared from the disease map
This disease is not as common as it used to be as personal hygiene standards continue to rise. You need to brush your teeth every day and visit your dentist regularly. This is to enable them to assess possible non-adjustments to prevent this.