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December 1947

POIKILODERMA VASCULARE ATROPHICANS: Report of a Case with Observations at Autopsy

Author Affiliations

Professor of Dermatology and Syphilology, Tufts College Medical School; Teaching Fellow in Pathology, Mallory Institute of Pathology; BOSTON

From the Boston City Hospital, Department of Dermatology and Syphilology, and the Mallory Institute of Pathology.

Arch Derm Syphilol. 1947;56(6):740-762. doi:10.1001/archderm.1947.01520120028002

ATROPHY, telangiectasia and pigmentation, with muscular weakness, were described by Petges and Cléjat1 in 1906, the same year in which Jacobi2 described a complex dermatologic disease characterized by telangiectasia, pigmentation and, later, capillary hemorrhages and atrophy, which he3 subsequently termed poikiloderma vasculare atrophicans. Since then over 180 cases have been presented, both as published reports and in addresses before dermatologic societies. Lane4 introduced the first case to an American audience in 1920, before the New York Dermatological Society. During the last twenty-five years, approximately twenty-two papers describing this disease have appeared in the English and American literature.

In recent years the existence of poikiloderma vasculare atrophicans as a separate clinical entity has been challenged by many competent dermatologists, including Oppenheim5 and Montgomery and Sullivan.6 These authors expressed the belief that this is a symptom rather than a clinical entity. According to Montgomery and Sullivan,