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March 17, 1975

Ginkgo-Tree Dermatitis, Stomatitis, and Proctitis

Author Affiliations

From the Dermatology Service, Department of Medicine, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC. Major Becker is now with William Beaumont Army Medical Center, El Paso, Tex.

JAMA. 1975;231(11):1162-1163. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03240230036017

ALLERGENS causing skin sensitization also can result in allergic contact reactions of mucous membranes including cheilitis, stomatitis, proctitis, and pruritus ani. The present case illustrates an unusual cause of such allergy from the fruit of the female ginkgo tree.

Report of a Case  A 63-year-old man was observed in the Dermatology Clinic for porphyria cutaneatarda. His urinary uroporphyrins had decreased to 227μg/24 hr with abstinence from alcohol. During a scheduled return visit, perioral erythema and swelling were noted. The patient related a history of burning, tingling, and soreness of his mouth, and a thick feeling in his tongue which began that morning. He denied the ingestion of new foods, new toothpaste, chewing gum, or oral medications. Results of a physical examination showed perioral erythema, swollen lips, and erythema of the buccal mucosa, tongue, and tonsillar pillars. The patient was advised to change toothpaste, avoid chewing gum, gargle with salt water,