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The skin in mastocytosis.

Authors
  • Soter, N A
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Investigative Dermatology
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Mar 01, 1991
Volume
96
Issue
3 Suppl
Identifiers
PMID: 16799606
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The most frequent site of organ involvement in patients with any form of mastocytosis is the skin. Cutaneous expressions include urticaria pigmentosa, mastocytoma, diffuse and erythrodermic cutaneous mastocytosis, and telangiectasia macularis eruptiva perstans. The cutaneous lesions tend to appear early in life. Although urticaria pigmentosa has been reported in 12 pairs of twins and one set of triplets, the majority of affected individuals have no familial association. Most patients with systemic mastocytosis have skin lesions; however, an occasional patient will have systemic disease with no other skin features than flushing. In lesional cutaneous sites and in non-lesional skin, there is an increase in the number of mast cells. Electron microscopy shows quantitative differences between lesional skin mast cells from patients with and without systemic disease. The mast cells from adult patients with systemic disease have a larger mean cytoplasmic area, nuclear size, and granule diameter. The granules contain predominantly grating/lattice structures. The cutaneous mast cells contain tryptase and chymase. They retain their functional reactivities to relevant secretory stimuli, such as C3a, morphine sulfate, and calcium ionophore A23187. Lesional skin contains histamine, leukotriene B4, prostaglandin D2, 5-hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acid, platelet-activating factor, and heparin. Treatment of the cutaneous manifestations includes the use of H1 and H2 antihistamines, oral disodium cromoglycate, psoralens plus ultraviolet A photochemotherapy, and potent topical corticosteroid preparations.

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