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November 1957

Mechanisms of Blister Formation

AMA Arch Derm. 1957;76(5):584-590. doi:10.1001/archderm.1957.01550230050008

Blister or vesicle formation in human skin has no doubt been a recognized entity since man began, or at least since his first contact with fire. In view of this fact and the fact that there are more than 30 quite distinct dermatoses associated with blister formation, it is strange that so little is known about the actual mechanisms of blister formation. The primary purpose of this paper is to define what is known about the chemistry, morphology, and physiology of the epidermal and dermal components which may play a more or less direct role in blister formation.

The various blister (vesicle) forming skin diseases certainly have a varied etiology. Among the well-established etiologic agents are: (1) virus invasion of the epidermal cell; (2) infection of the epidermis with fungi and bacteria; (3) sensitization of the skin (usually to simple chemicals); (4) vascular occlusion; (5) physical injury (heat, cold, ultraviolet

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