If thrush is limited to your mouth
Oral thrush can usually be diagnosed simply by looking at the lesions, but sometimes a small sample is examined under a microscope to confirm the diagnosis.
In older children or adolescents who have no previously identified risk factors, an underlying medical condition may be the cause of oral thrush. If your doctor suspects that to be the case, he or she will perform a physical exam as well as recommend certain blood tests to help find the source of the problem.
If thrush is in your esophagus
Thrush that extends into the esophagus can be serious. To help diagnose this condition, your doctor may ask you to have one or more of the following tests:
Aug. 20, 2011
- Throat culture. In this procedure, the back of your throat is swabbed with sterile cotton and the tissue sample cultured on a special medium to help determine which bacteria or fungi, if any, are causing your symptoms.
- Endoscopic examination. In this procedure, your doctor examines your esophagus, stomach and the upper part of your small intestine (duodenum) using a lighted, flexible tube with a camera on the tip (endoscope).
- Candidiasis. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/nczved/divisions/dfbmd/diseases/candidiasis/. Accessed April 25, 2011.
- Candidiasis. The Merck Manuals: The Merck Manual for Healthcare Professionals. http://www.merck.com/mmpe/print/sec10/ch120/ch120b.html. Accessed April 26, 2011.
- Lustig LR, et al. Ear, nose, & throat disorders. In: McPhee SJ, et al. Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment 2011. 50th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=2613. Accessed April 25, 2011.
- Candidiasis. American Academy of Pediatrics Redbook. http://aapredbook.aappublications.org. Accessed April 27, 2011.
- Kauffman CA. Clinical manifestations of oropharyngeal and esophageal candidiasis. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Is thrush causing my sore nipples? La Leche League International. http://www.llli.org/FAQ/thrush.html. Accessed June 29, 2009.
- Diabetes and oral health. American Dental Association. http://www.ada.org/sections/scienceAndResearch/pdfs/patient_18.pdf. Accessed April 21, 2011.
- Clarkson JE, et al. Interventions for preventing oral candidiasis for patients with cancer receiving treatment. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2007;(1): CD003807.
- Pienaar ED, et al. Interventions for the prevention and management of oropharyngeal candidiasis associated with HIV infection in adults and children. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. 2010;(11):CD003940.