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Original Articles
April 1962

Follicular Mucinosis (Alopecia Mucinosa)

Author Affiliations

Mayo Clinic and Mayo Foundation; Fellow in Dermatology, Mayo Foundation (Dr. Kim); Section of Dermatology (Dr. Winkelmann).

Arch Dermatol. 1962;85(4):490-498. doi:10.1001/archderm.1962.01590040054007

Alopecia mucinosa is a disease of unknown etiology, characterized clinically by plaques of folliculopapules and histologically by mucinosis of the pilosebaceous unit. Although Kreibich1 had reported a single case in 1926 and Lehner and Szodoray2 did so in 1939, Pinkus3 in 1957 was first to regard the condition as an entity and propose its name. Since alopecia is not always apparent or prominent, the condition may be more appropriately called "follicular mucinosis," as suggested by Jablonska and associates.4 Although only some 45 cases have been reported in the literature,1-17 it is likely that this condition is not uncommon, because in the majority of cases it is of little consequence symptomatically and so may be regarded as merely one of the follicular papulosquamous dermatoses.

At the present time, some would consider follicular mucinosis a degenerative mucinosis of the pilosebaceous unit whose etiology is yet unknown. While