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Aust Dent J. 1998 Feb;43(1):14-6.

Minocycline and oral pigmentation.

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  • 1School of Dentistry, University of Queensland.


Minocycline is a semisynthetic tetracycline used in the treatment of inflammatory acne because of its broad spectrum of activity, less common development of resistant organisms, and its anti-inflammatory effects. A number of adverse reactions are reported, including skin and oral pigmentation. This paper details the pharmacology of minocycline and describes the pigmentation and likely mechanisms active in both hard and soft tissues. Oral pigmentation usually involves the hard tissues only and presents typically as a discrete band occupying the central zone of the alveolar mucosa and palate. As with other sites, it may persist following withdrawal of the drug. Early recognition by the dental practitioner may allow an alternative form of therapy to be sought, minimizing the likelihood of a long-term aesthetic problem.

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