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January 1953

PEMPHIGUS IN ASSOCIATION WITH PREGNANCY: Observations of the Effect of Corticotropin (ACTH) and Cortisone on the Pemphigus, the Pregnancy, and the Infant

Author Affiliations


From the Department of Dermatology (Service of M. Harriss Samitz, M.D.), Graduate Hospital, Philadelphia, Residents in Dermatology (Dr. Greenberg and Dr. Coletti), and from the Department of Dermatology and Syphilology, Graduate School of Medicine (Herman Beerman, M.D., Chairman), University of Pennsylvania.

AMA Arch Derm Syphilol. 1953;67(1):10-17. doi:10.1001/archderm.1953.01540010014002

THE REPORT of this case record of a patient with pemphigus in association with pregnancy presented several interesting facets. The following features will be discussed: (1) the occurrence of pemphigus in a relatively young person; (2) the rarity of this disease in association with pregnancy; (3) the effect of the pregnant state on pemphigus; (4) the clinical and laboratory results following treatment with corticotropin (ACTH) and cortisone; (5) evidence to demonstrate the lack of effect of cortical hormone therapy on the developing fetus; (6) evidence to demonstrate the lack of effect of the primary disease process on the fetus, and (7) the change of a picture from pemphigus vulgaris into pemphigus foliaceus during the course of hormone therapy.


In a statistical analysis of 170 cases reviewed by Gellis and Glass,1 pemphigus occurred in the 20 to 30 age group in 15 cases, an incidence