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Ulceration - Definition


Ulceration is the process of superficial tissue loss, usually affecting the mucous membranes lining certain organs, particularly of the digestive system, or found on the skin, manifesting as a lesion. Skin ulcers are easily visible, forming a usually reddened crater. Ulcers on the mucous membranes can be observed when located on the membrane visible to the outside, such as in the oral cavity, whereas interior mucosa can be visualized using endoscopy, where a tiny camera is inserted into the body. These types of ulcers initially appear as a small area of erosion affecting only the membrane, which is qualified as an ulcer once it develops into a crater affecting the muscular layer underneath. Depending on their localization, these lesions are typically associated with underlying conditions. Ulceration is not, in itself, a disease, but more a symptom of a separate primary condition.