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October 1964

Familial Schamberg's Disease

Author Affiliations


From the Department of Dermatology, Harvard Medical School, at the Massachusetts General Hospital.

Arch Dermatol. 1964;90(4):400. doi:10.1001/archderm.1964.01600040028004

Schamberg's disease, an uncommon disorder of the skin, is manifested by asymptomatic brown macules and petechiae distributed primarily on the lower extremities.1-3 Since the disease is of a benign nature, it is important to distinguish it from the more serious disorders which produce bleeding in the skin. Except for a positive tourniquet test in about half the patients,3 no hematologic abnormalities have been described. The histopathologic picture is characterized by inflammation of the capillaries in the upper dermis, diapedesis of red cells, and the deposition of hemosiderin. Although the changes in the skin may last for months, the prognosis for complete recovery is excellent. The etiology remains obscure, but there have been reports suggesting that irritation from chemicals in clothing may play a role in some patients.4

The purpose of this paper is to describe a previously unreported finding in this disorder, its occurrence in two members

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