Brazilian Natural Medicine

Sialolithiasis (salivary stone): what it is, symptoms and treatment

Sialolithiasis is an inflammation and obstruction of the salivary gland ducts due to the formation of stones in this region, leading to the appearance of symptoms such as pain, swelling, difficulty swallowing and malaise.

Treatment can be done through massage and stimulation of saliva production and in more severe cases, surgery may be necessary.

main symptoms

The main symptoms caused by sialolithiasis are pain in the face, mouth and neck that can get worse before or during meals, which is when the production of saliva by the salivary glands increases. This saliva gets blocked, causing pain and swelling in the mouth, face and neck and difficulty swallowing.

In addition, the mouth can become drier, and bacterial infections can also appear, causing symptoms such as fever, bad taste in the mouth and redness in the region.

Possible causes

Sialolithiasis occurs due to clogging of the ducts of the salivary glands, which is caused by stones that can form due to the crystallization of substances in the saliva such as calcium phosphate and calcium carbonate, causing saliva to become trapped in the glands and cause swelling.

It is not known for sure what causes the formation of these stones, but it is thought that it is due to certain medications, such as antihypertensives, antihistamines or anticholinergics, which reduce the amount of saliva produced in the glands, or dehydration that makes the more concentrated saliva, or even having an insufficient diet, which leads to a reduction in saliva production.

In addition, people with gout are more likely to suffer from sialolithiasis, due to the formation of stones by crystallization of uric acid.

Sialolithiasis most often occurs in the salivary ducts connected to the submandibular glands, however stones can also form in the ducts connected to the parotid glands and very rarely in the sublingual glands.

How to confirm the diagnosis

Sialolithiasis can be diagnosed through clinical evaluation and tests such as computed tomography, ultrasound and sialography.

How is the treatment done?

In cases where the size of the stone is small, the treatment can be done at home, taking sugar-free sweets and drinking lots of water, in order to stimulate the production of saliva and force the stone out of the duct. You can also apply heat and gently massage the affected area.

In more severe cases, the doctor may try to remove this stone by pressing on both sides of the duct so that it comes out, and if this is not possible, surgery may be necessary to remove it. In some cases, shock waves can also be used to break the stones into smaller pieces, in order to facilitate their passage through the ducts.

In the presence of a salivary gland infection, which can occur due to the presence of stagnant saliva, antibiotics may also be necessary.

Always consult a doctor.

Verified by RJ985 – Brazilian natural medicine CMIO.org

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