Spontaneous (ie, nontraumatic) lip swelling is usually painless. Itching may or may not be present. Cheilitis Cheilitis (lip inflammation) Lip inflammation may be generalized, or localized to one or more ulcers or lesions. Although some swelling may be present, the main manifestation is discomfort. Lip swelling with little or no... read more sometimes causes lip swelling, but patients typically present because of the painful inflammation and lesions.
By itself, lip swelling is not dangerous. However, when lip swelling is caused by angioedema Angioedema Angioedema is edema of the deep dermis and subcutaneous tissues. It is usually an acute but sometimes a chronic mast cell–mediated reaction caused by exposure to a drug (eg, angiotensin-converting... read more , concurrent swelling in the oropharynx and/or lower airways can be fatal.
Lip swelling may be acute or chronic.
Acute lip swelling may be caused by
Allergic reactions (eg, to foods, drugs, lipstick, airborne irritants, nickel)
Nonallergic drug causes (eg, angiotensin-converting enzyme [ACE] inhibitors Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme (ACE) Inhibitors The treatment of hypertension may involve lifestyle modifications alone (eg, dietary modification, weight loss, exercise) or in combination with medications. The decision to treat with medication... read more , calcium channel blockers Calcium Channel Blockers The treatment of hypertension may involve lifestyle modifications alone (eg, dietary modification, weight loss, exercise) or in combination with medications. The decision to treat with medication... read more , certain fibrinolytic drugs Fibrinolytics Treatment of acute coronary syndromes (ACS) is designed to relieve distress, interrupt thrombosis, reverse ischemia, limit infarct size, reduce cardiac workload, and prevent and treat complications... read more )
Chronic lip swelling may occur with
Acromegaly Gigantism and Acromegaly Gigantism and acromegaly are syndromes of excessive secretion of growth hormone (hypersomatotropism) that are nearly always due to a pituitary adenoma. Before closure of the epiphyses, the result... read more (often with coarsened facial features and/or enlarged tongue)
Rare causes of chronic lip swelling include ongoing exposure to an unsuspected allergen, cheilitis granulomatosa, and Crohn disease Crohn Disease Crohn disease is a chronic transmural inflammatory bowel disease that usually affects the distal ileum and colon but may occur in any part of the gastrointestinal tract. Symptoms include diarrhea... read more .
The first step in evaluation is to assess airway patency and establish and control the airway Airway Establishment and Control Airway management consists of Clearing the upper airway Maintaining an open air passage with a mechanical device Sometimes assisting respirations (See also Overview of Respiratory Arrest.) read more if necessary. Diagnostic inquiry focuses on potential causative exposures and underlying diseases.
Treatment includes elimination of identified causes and treatment of causative diseases. Corticosteroid ointment or antihistamines (eg, diphenhydramine) may be used for allergic lip swelling. Surgical removal of chronic excess lip tissue may have cosmetic benefit.
Drugs Mentioned In This Article
|Aid to Sleep, Alka-Seltzer Plus Allergy, Aller-G-Time , Altaryl, Banophen , Benadryl, Benadryl Allergy, Benadryl Allergy Children's , Benadryl Allergy Dye Free, Benadryl Allergy Kapgel, Benadryl Allergy Quick Dissolve, Benadryl Allergy Ultratab, Benadryl Children's Allergy, Benadryl Children's Allergy Fastmelt, Benadryl Children's Perfect Measure, Benadryl Itch Stopping, Ben-Tann , Children's Allergy, Compoz Nighttime Sleep Aid, Diphedryl , DIPHEN, Diphen AF , Diphenhist, DiphenMax , Dytan, ElixSure Allergy, Genahist , Geri-Dryl, Hydramine, Itch Relief , M-Dryl, Nighttime Sleep Aid, Nytol, PediaCare Children's Allergy, PediaCare Nighttime Cough, PediaClear Children's Cough, PHARBEDRYL, Q-Dryl, Quenalin , Siladryl Allergy, Silphen , Simply Sleep , Sleep Tabs, Sleepinal, Sominex, Sominex Maximum Strength, Theraflu Multi-Symptom Strip, Triaminic Allergy Thin Strip, Triaminic Cough and Runny Nose Strip, Tusstat, Unisom, Uni-Tann, Valu-Dryl , Vanamine PD, Vicks Qlearquil Nighttime Allergy Relief, Vicks ZzzQuil Nightime Sleep-Aid