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February 5, 2020

Gardenia Fruit–Related Blue-Gray Skin Pigmentation

Author Affiliations
  • 1Graduate School of Medicine and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Department of Dermatology, University of Toyama, Toyama, Toyama, Japan
  • 2Graduate School of Medicine and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Department of Applied Pharmacology, University of Toyama, Toyama, Toyama, Japan
JAMA Dermatol. 2020;156(3):351-353. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2019.4682

Gardenia fruit is widely used in herbal medicine, and it has choleretic, sedative, diuretic, anti-inflammatory, and antipyretic effects.1 An ingredient of gardenia fruit is attracting attention as a possible cause of mesenteric phlebosclerosis, which is characterized by fibrotic change or calcification of the mesenteric vein and the bronze coloration of the colonic membrane.2 Mesenteric phlebosclerosis may cause abdominal pain, stool abnormalities, and bowel obstruction, but it is often asymptomatic. It is suggested that genipin, a metabolite of geniposide (the major ingredient of gardenia fruit) is involved in the bronze coloration. Herein, we describe a patient who took the extract of gardenia fruit for 7 years, developed skin pigmentation complicated with mesenteric phlebosclerosis.

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