In 1902, Fox and Fordyce1 first reported two patients with a pruritic papular eruption of the axillae. They were describing a distinctive, yet rare, dermatosis which strangely had eluded recognition by preceding observers. Within the next 25 years, more than 75 cases had been reported and it had been established that Fox-Fordyce disease, as it came to be known, was intimately associated with the apocrine sweat gland.
It is profitable to survey the course of development of knowledge concerning this disease as revealed by more than 125 articles. Although no recent reviews have appeared, Goodman2 and also Engelhardt3 have carefully presented the data available from 1902 to 1927. The salient accepted findings of this initial period may be summarized as follows:
1. Clinically the disease was defined as a chronic pruritic papular eruption, usually appearing in women and presenting a strict localization to