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June 1962

Porphyrin Excretion in Scleroderma (Acrosclerosis): A Study

Author Affiliations


From the Departments of Medicine and Dermatology, School of Medicine, University of Southern California and The Los Angeles County General Hospital.

Arch Dermatol. 1962;85(6):705-707. doi:10.1001/archderm.1962.01590060015002

Introduction  Changes of the skin similar to those seen in scleroderma have been reported in some cases of porphyria cutanea tarda (PCT). In a series of 34 cases of PCT studied by Brunsting, yellowing and hardening of the exposed skin of the face and back of the neck was commonly observed, especially in men.1 Tio also noted thickening, yellowing, and deep furrows of the skin.2 Bolgert and Canivet stated that the confluent atrophic macules secondary to bullae or minor injury resembled scleroderma.3 Redeker and Bronow found marked cutaneous sclerosis and occasionally alopecia in some patients with PCT.4In those cases where the features of scleroderma are found in association with an abnormal urine and/or fecal porphyrin excretion, there may be confusion as to whether this truly represents porphyria. The possibility exists that such patients have true scleroderma with nonspecific although abnormal porphyrin excretion. We are unaware