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October 1947

ACIDITY OF THE SCALP: Nature and Possible Relation to Seborrhea

Author Affiliations


From the Departments of Biological Chemistry and Dermatology, University of Illinois College of Medicine.

Arch Derm Syphilol. 1947;56(4):448-451. doi:10.1001/archderm.1947.01520100044006

SEBORRHEA and seborrheic skin are poorly understood terms that defy accurate definition. Nonetheless, experienced dermatologists develop some conception of them, though they may be embarrassed about putting it in writing. The one outstanding quality, oiliness, may indeed be absent in some cases, as in the dry varieties. Scaling, too, may be present or absent. Obvious inflammation may be lacking, or a severe degree of exudation can occur. Election of sites of large and numerous oil glands is a common denominator. The laboratory observations, too, are discouraging. Diverse organisms are seen. Pityrosporum ovale, observed often on the scalp, may be present in cases of seborrhea, but this observation is not constant. We are ignorant of what else may support the seborrheal state. The diathetic, the endocrine and the vegetative nervous factors, of course, have been considered in a theoretic way. It seems obvious that the problem must be surveyed more accurately