As the lips serve not only as a face ornament, they are also doors to the inner world (they serve as the beginning of the digestive and respiratory systems), the state when they are swollen or one lip suddenly swelled up (“swollen lip”, as they say) can be the beginning of serious changes in the body.
There may be very little time to decide what to do in this case, it can barely be enough to dial an ambulance number. This is in a situation where it is known that the lip is swollen from the blow, you can not hurry, but in the case of growth literally by the minute along with the local phenomenon of the general reaction of the body, you should show maximum promptness in delivering the victim to the hospital.
Possible causes of lip swelling
All possible reasons for the occurrence of tissue thickening (from mild swelling of the lips to an extreme degree, when the lip is literally swollen) can be divided into categories.
Lower lip burn
The change in volume and mass occurs due to factors:
In the traumatic category most common:
- burns with hot liquids, high-temperature food, chronic cauterization (mostly of the lower lip) when using a pipe or when smoking cigarettes to the filter;
- sunburns due to unlimited use of the sea or the abuse of a solarium.
This includes cases of damage due to direct contact of the lips with a traumatic factor:
- out of the row or a defective tooth;
- dental or surgical instrument;
- brass knuckles or another beating instrument;
- a limb in a boxing or kickboxing competition;
- hard surface when falling face down;
- random subject in a hiking trip, when performing business or official tasks and in a different setting.
Causes of lip swelling of an infectious property include changes as a result of:
- bacterial, fungal, viral damage to the tissues of the oral cavity;
- general bacterial infection of the skin with the involvement of the lips.
Special attention in this section deserve quite frequent cases of swelling of the lips (or both) as a result of herpes.
The group of fairly rare causes can be attributed cases:
- preeclampsia during pregnancy;
- cheilitis, Rosenthal-Melkerson syndrome (when the upper lip is swollen and remains so for life), angioedema with hereditary genesis;
- lip cancer
Or they are private (local) manifestations on the background of a general edema syndrome in pregnant women and other categories of patients: with disorders of tissue metabolism due to:
- heart, kidney, liver failure;
- protein starvation;
- blood transfusions.
In allergic genesis of edema, the provoking factors can be:
- food ingredients;
- drug components;
- substances in the formulation of household chemicals and cosmetics;
- allergens in the composition of the dust (home, carpet, book);
- organic compounds of which wool, down, leather of domestic animals, birds, and also forages for them consist;
- poisons injected by insect bites (bees, wasps) or mosquito saliva that gets into the skin when they are bitten, and substances of similar action.
Comprehensive video about the causes of allergies:
The causes of edematous deformity (in particular, lips) are distortions of the natural course of biochemical reactions that determine the adequacy of the level of immune protection. As a result, even its own proteins and other chemical compounds that are part of the tissues of the body are perceived as foreign and represent a danger to the existence of the body.
The most famous is the state of AIDS (HIV syndrome).
Other diseases with pronounced aggression directed against own tissues (auto-aggression) include such immunodeficiency states as:
- systemic lupus erythematosus;
- rheumatoid arthritis;
- multiple sclerosis;
- Addison-Birmer’s anemia;
- Hashimoto thyroiditis;
- Syogren syndrome (Sjogren), Wiskott-Aldrich;
- hemolytic disease (hemolytic anemia) of newborns;
- certain types of leukopenia, thrombocytopenia and other immune diseases with auto-aggression.
Swollen lip as a manifestation of allergies
Edema is a mandatory component of any allergic reaction – the body tries to either wash away the irritant agent with an abundance of excreted liquid, or dilute it significantly. Lips as a structure with sufficient looseness of tissues respond to the threat (true or imaginary) one of the first, and the severity of the response is always characterized by maximum power and exponency.
In addition to the rapidly increasing edema, the manifestations of allergy in this area of the face are the patient’s feelings and objective signs:
- severe itching, leading to the desire to scratch, rub the affected area;
- feelings of bursting, tingling, burning, alternating with pain or numbness, “stiffness”.
Bright hyperemia is replaced by varying intensity of purple and bluish shades, initially increased to the extreme degree of pain, tactile and temperature sensitivity and then dulled. The body becomes tense, as if inflated from the inside, at the same time its structure becomes loose, as if “crumbly”, “lumpy”.
Symptoms and diagnosis of an allergic reaction
In addition to local manifestations with a change in the state of the lips, all organs and systems are involved in the reaction.
The overall picture of the phenomenon is characterized by the expression “tension”: strained cough, red face, intensely pulsating neck veins, “mad” heartbeat.
Hyperproduction of mucus in the respiratory tract with simultaneous narrowing of their lumen due to swelling leads to difficulty breathing (up to the threat of death from suffocation).
With the increase in the severity of the latter factor, the corresponding changes in the mode of activity of the heart and blood vessels increase:
- increases the frequency and rhythm of heart contractions;
- blood pressure numbers are rising;
- peripheral pulse characteristics change.
Changes in the structure of the nasal mucosa leads to reflex sneezing and runny nose, as well as tearing and photophobia (due to the involvement of the eye mucosa), and the same processes in the upper respiratory tract – to cough.
A decrease in the degree of blood oxygenation and an excess of carbon dioxide in it cause a change in the color of the integument (skin and mucous membranes), with hyperemia prevailing initially with an increase in cyanosis at subsequent stages of the process.
The reaction of the internal organs (due to the increased activity of the smooth muscles) is manifested by an increase in the excretory functions of the glands and hollow organs:
- frequent urination (pollacyuria);
- bitterness in the mouth;
- nausea with subsequent vomiting;
- headache and dizziness (due to vasospasm and hypoxia of the brain):
- profuse sweating;
- trembling in the body, alternating with chills.
The severity of the reaction of the organism does not necessarily have to reach its extreme limits – it all depends on:
- the duration of the period of exposure to the allergen;
- the degree of disorders of the defense mechanisms;
- the level of sensitization to this agent – “imprisonment” on him and many other factors.
First aid and further treatment
In an easy case (when re-entering an organism already familiar with it) the need for hospitalization is usually not required – it is enough to take an antihistamine available in the first-aid kit of an allergic-prone person:
With the ineffectiveness of these funds (with an increase in organ disorders and a worsening of the patient’s general condition), the provision of specialized medical care is required, and in especially severe cases, resuscitation.
The main areas of treatment are:
- replenishment of the body’s own hormones ’volume artificially administered;
- maintaining the overall tone of the cardiovascular system with the stabilization of blood circulation in the subsequent stages;
- restoration of the airway (resulting in the restoration of the normal gas composition of the blood, its acid-base balance and tissue metabolism).
Treatment of angioedema
The condition, according to a long-standing tradition, also referred to as angioedema, in the light version is a case where there is time to think – what to do, what medicine to drink, and in severe – not giving time to figure out which doctor to turn to.
For the question here is no longer about how to remove the tumor from the lip, but about how, together with the tumor of the lip, to quickly remove the edematous manifestations of allergy in other areas. For the patient’s life depends on the speed of the reaction of the environment.
The essence of the state is the rapid increase in capillary permeability, which literally leads to “flooding from the inside” with edematous fluid of individual parts (regions) of the body.
The favorite external localization of the syndrome is the face (with full or partial seizure), neck, one or both limbs (upper or lower), and the genital area. In severe cases, the internal organs suffer, and the involvement of the meninges can lead to a stroke or other cerebral circulation disorder, the intestines – to peritonitis, and localization in the respiratory tract – to death from suffocation.
The time of development of angioedema is calculated either in minutes, or it progresses from several hours to several days, and can last up to 6 weeks.
When involved in the process of the respiratory tract, the meninges, as well as the development of anaphylactic shock, the patient requires emergency care, starting right in the ambulance car.
Prior to her arrival, it is necessary to reassure the patient as much as possible, without trying to lay him down (preferably a sitting position, the child is taken in his arms).
To facilitate breathing as much as possible free the victim from the elements of clothing, give access to the air by opening the window, door or transfer to fresh air.
With absolute confidence in the ingestion of the allergen in the body with the food eaten, the patient is given to take a suspension of activated carbon or other sorbents: enterosgel, smect.
Flush the stomach should not be because of the danger to the patient choking gag with a possible laryngeal edema.
A cold compress can restrict the spread of edema. When thirsty give drink mineral water.
Mandatory measure is giving the patient 1 tablet of any antihistamine drug:
To accelerate the action or when it is impossible to swallow the drug is used sublingually.
Improving well-being does not cause the cancellation of an ambulance call, even if a neighbor-nurse has administered an antihistamine intravenously.
The basis of emergency treatment is the management of glucocorticoid drugs – hormones:
- Prednisolone at a dose of 60-90 mg;
- Dexamethasone (8 to 12 mg).
If it is impossible to intravenously administer the drug, the contents of the ampoule are allowed to digest by dropping under the tongue.
Subcutaneous administration of 0.1-0.5 ml of adrenaline gives a vasoconstrictor effect, which leads to a rise in blood pressure (systolic up to 90 mm of mercury.).
In the absence of effect, the dose of injected Dexamethasone is increased to 16, Prednisolone – to 120 mg. With an increase in the symptoms of laryngeal edema due to unsuccessful events, intubation of the trachea is performed.
Video from Dr. Malysheva – first aid for angioedema:
Further treatment is carried out in stationary conditions. The same applies to patients, with a less significant and dangerous condition of the body who reached the medical institution on their own.