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May 16, 2011

Fox-Fordyce Disease Following Axillary Laser Hair Removal

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Department of Dermatology, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

Arch Dermatol. 2011;147(5):573-576. doi:10.1001/archdermatol.2011.103

Background  Fox-Fordyce disease (FFD) is a relatively rare entity with a typical clinical presentation. Numerous studies have described unifying histopathological features of FFD, which together suggest a defect in the follicular infundibulum resulting in follicular dilation with keratin plugging, subsequent apocrine duct obstruction, and apocrine gland dilation, with eventual extravasation of the apocrine secretions as the primary histopathogenic events in the evolution of the disease.

Observations  We describe a case of FFD that developed in a 41-year-old woman 3 months after completing a series of axillary laser hair removal treatments, and we detail the clinical and histopathological changes typical for FFD.

Conclusion  Because defective infundibular maturation has been suggested to play a central role in the evolution of FFD, the close temporal relationship of laser hair therapy with the development of FFD suggests a causal role, which we continue to explore.