How accurate are oral swab tests for oral thrush?

Joined
May 26, 2023
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I was wondering: how accurate are oral swab tests for oral thrush?

I’m asking because I tested negative. Despite the results, I still get a white build up that bleeds slightly when I brush it. On top of that, my angular cheilitis just healed.

(I should add that I was never clinically diagnosed by my dentist or oral surgeon. I’m just confused why my tongue keeps bleeding.)
 

MattKW

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What type or brand of test did you use? When it says "positive", was there a measurement reading, i.e. CFU mL?
Why haven't you been to a dentist or oral biologist (or even your usual doctor)?
Do you have photos?
 

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Joined
May 26, 2023
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Neither my GP nor my dentist thought it was oral thrush upon first impression, but my dentist swabbed my tongue to be sure.

I don’t recall the test my he used. I just know that he used an oversized q-tip and liberally swabbed my tongue. A few days later, he told me the sample was negative for oral candidiasis.

However, sometimes my tongue bleeds when I brush, and I read that typically bleeding is caused by not a fungal infection.

I’ve included 3 photos below for reference:

1. Typical presentation when I wake up in the morning.
2. The worst bleeding I’ve had after brushing/scraping my tongue — usually it’s only 1/2 taste buds bleeding.
3. My tongue after a cleaning (no issues with bleeding).
 

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MattKW

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This is not a Candida infection, it's a typical non-harmful "hairy tongue" caused by long filiform papillae. There is no need to brush your tongue so aggressively to wear them down.
Everyone has Candida in their mouth, so just getting a positive reading means nothing without a quantitative measurement, and there is always going to be an underlying problem of either immunosuppresion or overuse of antibiotics. A Candida infection will typically peel off with finger rubbing.
 

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