Despite increasing recognition of the systemic nature of generalized scleroderma, the hidebound condition of the skin remains the cardinal clinical manifestation of this disease and the most accessible feature for clinical evaluation. In this report a new method of quantitating skin mobility in scleroderma is described that obviates the need for specialized instrumentation. By this technique, quantitative skin mobility data have been obtained serially from 8 patients with generalized scleroderma at frequent intervals for periods up to 22 months. It is the purpose of this report to present the patterns of skin mobility change in these patients.
Previous methods of measuring the abnormal mechanical properties of the skin in scleroderma employing especially constructed apparatus have not gained wide acceptance. Sodeman and Burch1 utilized small bakelite cubes glued to the skin with collodion and a pair of calibrated spring calipers to exert a force that stretched the cubes apart. These
BACHMAN DM. Quantitating Skin Mobility in Scleroderma. Arch Dermatol. 1961;83(4):598–605. doi:10.1001/archderm.1961.01580100062008