A recent article by Jacobsen1 gives a fairly complete survey of the literature relative to cases of hereditary dystrophy of the nails, either alone or combined with alopecia. As these cases appear to be very rare and are interesting as examples of the mendelian transmission of characteristics, I will report a typical case, together with the family tree (fig. 1) covering four generations. The patient was referred to me, June 20, 1927, by Drs. Bartlett and Ruggles of San Francisco.
B. L., a girl, aged 5 years, appeared normal in every way except for the nails both of the fingers and of the toes (fig. 2). She was in the fourth generation, being a direct offspring through child 5 of the original union.
The base of the nails appeared nearly normal, but they increased in thickness toward the distal ends and were very brittle and dry.
Thompson HB. HEREDITARY DYSTROPHY OF THE NAILS. JAMA. 1928;91(20):1547. doi:10.1001/jama.1928.92700200002014b