Dental Procedures

Tongue Lacerations

Tongue lacerations are surprisingly common in the Emergency Department. Fortunately most of them don’t require any specific interventions. You just let them go and they heal on their own. Really. But if you do have to repair I offer advice in this brief episode.


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Resource from the British Dental Journal that has EXCELLENT pictures of healing tongue lacerations to share with patients and families.


Das UM, Gadicherla P1. Lacerated tongue injury in children. Int J Clin Pediatr Dent. 2008 Sep;1(1):39-41. PMID: 25206087.

Kazzi MG, Silverberg M. Pediatric tongue laceration repair using 2-octyl cyanoacrylate (dermabond(®)). J Emerg Med. 2013 Dec;45(6):846-8. PMID: 23827167.

Lamell CW, Fraone G, Casamassimo PS, Wilson S. Presenting characteristics and treatment outcomes for tongue lacerations in children. Pediatr Dent. 1999 Jan-Feb;21(1):34-8. PMID: 10029965.

Patel, A. Tongue lacerations. Br Dent J 204, 355 (2008).

Ud-din Z, Aslam M, Gull S. Towards evidence based emergency medicine: best BETs from the Manchester Royal Infirmary. Should minor mucosal tongue lacerations be sutured in children? Emerg Med J. 2007 Feb;24(2):123-4. PMID: 17251622.

By bradsobo

Brad Sobolewski, MD, MEd is a Professor of Pediatric Emergency Medicine and an Associate Director for the Pediatric Residency Training Program at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. He is on Twitter @PEMTweets and authors the Pediatric Emergency Medicine site PEMBlog and produces and hosts the PEM Currents: The Pediatric Emergency Medicine Podcast.

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