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September 18, 1954


Author Affiliations

New York

From the Department of Medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and the Presbyterian Hospital in the City of New York.

JAMA. 1954;156(3):223-224. doi:10.1001/jama.1954.02950030015005

Melkersson's syndrome was described in 1928.1 A patient had recurrent facial paralysis and edema of the upper lip. Later lingua plicata was noted as a third symptom.2 In 1947 Kettel reviewed the literature and reported five additional cases.3 The syndrome may be familial but is not hereditary. The first attacks of paralysis have occurred before the patients were 18 years old and usually before adolescence. Both facial nerves have been affected alternately, and the edema, ordinarily recurrent at first but permanent later, has followed the initial attack of paralysis. Rarely edema and paralysis have occurred simultaneously. In a few patients the intervals between the occurrence of paralysis and the attacks of edema have been long. Confined to the upper lip and cheeks (occasionally the lower lip or the circumorbital tissues have been involved) a series of transient attacks similar to angioneurotic edema have led in most patients

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