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July 2, 1910


Author Affiliations

Professor of Dermatology, University of Nebraska OMAHA

JAMA. 1910;55(1):4-6. doi:10.1001/jama.1910.04330010006002

Pemphigus is a skin disease characterized by the erupton of blebs. These are, however, not characteristic in themselves but only in connection with other important features. The whole subject is not sufficiently cleared up yet and there is no unanimity as to what to include and what to exclude. Dermatitis herpetiformis is still considered pemphigus in Germany. Various skin diseases are denominated pemphigus, such as pemphigus neonatorum, which most probably is a bullous form of impetigo contagiosa, pemphigus syphiliticus, a manifestation of syphilis, pemphigus neuroticus and hystericus, sequels of functional and organic nerve disorders. A strict avoidance of these names would clear the ground rapidly. Bullæ are seen in bullous dermatitis, bullous erythema, and bullous urticaria, but nobody thinks of including these in pemphigus. Whether there is an acute pemphigus is a matter of controversy and denied by many.

What then does constitute real pemphigus? In the first