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March 1985

Nummular Purpura

Author Affiliations

Auburn Fallon Medical Center 35 Millbury St Auburn, MA 01501

Arch Dermatol. 1985;121(3):309-310. doi:10.1001/archderm.1985.01660030029012

To the Editor—  Coin rubbing, or ca̧o gío', is a common practice in Vietnam and among Vietnamese immigrants1,2 as a folk remedy for fever, headaches, and other symptoms, mainly in children.2 Oil is first massaged onto the back and chest, and the skin is stroked with the edge of a coin vertically and/or along the ribs, until purpura appears.2 We recently had the opportunity to observe this condition (Figure). A fever is supposed to break when the purpura resolves. Copper coins, it is claimed, are most effective.The reports of coin rubbing have appeared in the pediatric literature, where it has been called pseudobattering to distinguish the linear purpura from true child abuse.1,2 Rasmussen3 mentioned coin rubbing in his recent review of "puzzling purpuras" in children. The condition is onlyLinear purpura from coin rubbing. likely to be seen incidentally by a dermatologist, however, as

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