[Skip to Navigation]
December 1963

Cold Panniculitis

Author Affiliations


From The University of Pennsylvania Departments of Dermatology, School of Medicine and Graduate School of Medicine and The Graduate Hospital (Drs. Solomon and Beerman).

Arch Dermatol. 1963;88(6):897-900. doi:10.1001/archderm.1963.01590240221036

We have described a type of panniculitis definitely attributable to cold in a seemingly healthy young woman. Clinically and histologically similar lesions were repeatedly reproduced in uninvolved sites by the application of an ice cube to the skin for two minutes. Laboratory studies suggested a qualitative abnormality in the platelets, excessive fibrinolytic activity, and the presence of cryofibrinogens. Differentiation of this entity from clinically similar entities, such as nodular vasculitis, nontuberculous erythema induratum, and pernio was attempted. Patients who present a history of cold exposure and nodular painful lesions on the exposed parts, with histological demonstration of a panniculitis and development of similar nodules at the site of cold application 48-72 hours after exposure should be suspected of having cold panniculitis. Studies of coagulation and a search for cryofibrinogens are indicated in these patients. Cold panniculitis is probably a hypersensitivity reaction not of the urticarial or anyphylactic type. Treatment was restricted to avoidance of cold.

Add or change institution