Primary and Secondary Lesions of the Oral cavity

Primary Lesions:

  • Macule
  • Papule
  • Nodule
  • Vesicles
  • Bullar tumors
  • Wheals

Secondary Lesions:

  • Erosions
  • Ulcers
  • Fissures
  • Desqumations (excoriations)
Primary and Secondary lesions of the oral cavity

Primary and Secondary lesions of the oral cavity

Primary lesions of Oral Cavity:

Well circumscribed flat lesions that are noticeable due to the change in color of Skin or Mucosa.
Red- Inflamation
Pigmented- Melanin, Haemosiderin, foreign material.
Ex: Melanotic Macule

These are solid lesions raised above the Skin or Mucosal surface and are smaller than 1 cm in Diameter.
Ex: Erythema multiformae, lupus erythematous, Sarcoidosis
Yellow-White Papules seen in Hyperplastic Candidiasis.


These are solid raised lesions that are greater than 1cm in diameter, These are also referred to as large papules.

Also defined as an elevated, plateau-like lesion that is greater in its diameter than in its depth


The lesions present deeper in the dermis or mucosa, which are generally wider than they are high. They might sometimes protrude above the skin or oral mucosa.

Ex: Oral Mucosal Nodule.


These are elevated blisters seen on the surface of mucosa, which contain clear fluid and are less than 1 cm in diameter.

Ex: Atopic Dermatitis, Chicken Pox, Herpes Zooster, Herpes Simplex.


These are elevated blisters containing clear fluid greater than 1 cm in Diameter.

( or )

A rounded or irregularly shaped blister containing serous or seropurulent fluid, equal to or greater than 1 cm in Diameter

Ex: Bullous Phemphigoid.


A pustule is a small elevation of the skin containing cloudy or purulent material usually consisting of necrotic inflammatory cell infiltrate.


Small, inflamed, pus filled, Blisters seen in the oral cavity.

Ex: Rare Oral Phemphigus presenting as Pustules.


A rounded or flat-topped, pale red papule or plaque that is characteristically evanescent or disappearing with 24 to 48 hours

Secondary Lesions Of the Oral cavity:


Red lesions often caused by the rupture of vesicles or Bullae or Trauma.

Ex: Erosive Lichen Planus

These are well circumscribed, often depressed lesions with an epithelial defect that is covered by a fibrin clot, causing a yellow-white appearance.

Ex: Apthous Ulcer

A deep furrow, cleft, or slit.
A developmental break or fault in the enamel of a tooth.

Ex: Enamel fissure

Shedding of the outer layers of the skin.


A punctate or linear abrasion produced by mechanical means (often scratching),

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