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January 1989

Unilateral Muehrcke's Lines Following Trauma

Author Affiliations

Department of Dermatology University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, NC 27514

Arch Dermatol. 1989;125(1):133-134. doi:10.1001/archderm.1989.01670130135026

To the Editor.—  Muehrcke's lines1 are characterized by two transverse white nail bed bands parallel to the lunula associated with nephrotic syndrome. In our experience, these bands are uncommon. Their cause is unknown. We present a case of unilateral Muehrcke's lines that developed after trauma. Unilateral Muehrcke's lines have not been previously described, and their existence in this case points to edema as the likely cause of white nail bed lines. We further propose that edema could effect this change by inducing microscopic separation of the normally tightly adherent nail from its bed.

Report of a Case.—  An otherwise healthy 30-year-old man was injured in a fall from a steel structure. He suffered fractures of the left humerus, avulsion of much of the left forearm requiring arterial grafting, and a crush injury resulting in fasciotomy. The wounds healed within one month, but much edema and decreased range of motion

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