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What causes black coating on tongue?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2011
Answered : 1561 Questions
I have an acute onset of a black coating on my tongue this am. What could be the cause? I am a 72 yo male semi-retired Ob/Gyn. I am currently under Rx for Hypertension (Valsartin And maxzide), high cholesterol(statin), hypo thyroidism (synthroid) and Gout (Cholchicine and Allopurinol, and gerd (OTC omeprozol). Recent attack of gout has caused increase in allopurinol dosage. Recent blood tests otherwise normal. Do I need to call my Internist. My wife just advised she has a blackish color to her tongue also. Thanks, JD Wright, MD
Posted Tue, 5 Aug 2014 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Vidya KR 10 hours later
Brief Answer:
Diet changes or medications containing bismuth

Detailed Answer:
Hi, thanks for using Healthcaremagic.

I went through your query and understood your concerns.

Intake of bismuth containing medication and diet changes and coffee and tea intake results in black coating over tongue. Which usually disappears by change in bismuth content in medication or diet changes.

These are few measures which help to reduce your coating.

Brush your tongue daily with a soft-bristled toothbrush and toothpaste or a solution of 1 part hydrogen peroxide to 2 parts water.

Scrape the tongue with an upside-down teaspoon to remove the "furry" coating on the tongue.

Better to avoid tobacco products.

Hope I answered your query. Feel free to ask further related query.

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