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May 1993


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Arch Dermatol. 1993;129(5):670. doi:10.1001/archderm.1993.01680260146030

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A PARADOXICAL title, such as "The Dermatology of Mucous Membranes," might be used to describe the subject matter of this paper. Most diseases of the skin depend, at least partially, upon exciting causes developed within the economy, in other words, upon chemical products of bacterial activity or tissue change or to alterations of the capillary circulation brought about by vaso-motor influence.

We should naturally infer that constitutional causes capable of giving rise to disease of the skin, the protective tissue of the external surface, should likewise provoke corresponding manifestations upon the tissue which lines the interior surface. The skin and mucous membrane are continuous and their structure is analogous. In each a substratum of connective tissue, containing white and yellow elastic fibres, is covered by a layer of epithelial cells. Each is richly supplied with blood vessels, lymphatics and nerves, each contains papillae and glands.

The epithelium of mucous membrane is modified in accordance with the different functions of that tissue. Though not so plainly divisible into strata as those of the latter, the epithelial cells of the former are in different situations characterized by more notable peculiarities of form than those of the integument. The connective tissue of mucous membrane is softer and of looser texture than that of the skin, and the elastic fibres are fewer in number. The glandular element is more unequally distributed in mucous membrane, reaching its highest development in the stomach.

J Cutan Genito-Urin Dis.

May 1893;11:176.

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