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Journal: Indian journal of dermatology, venereology and leprology


Background: Atopic dermatitis (AD) has severe impact on the quality of life (QoL) of children suffering from the disease and their families. The infant’s dermatitis quality of life index (IDQoL) and the dermatitis family impact questionnaire (DFI) were designed to study this impact. Aims: To compare the impact of AD on children and their families in different countries. Methods: 419 children with AD from six countries representing three continents under the age of 4 years were included into the study. English, Ukrainian, Czech, Portuguese, and Korean versions of the IDQoL and the DFI and Dutch version of the IDQoL questionnaires were used. Results: The highest scored items for the IDQoL and the DFI were rather similar. The IDQoL and the DFI results were well correlated with parental assessment of disease severity and between each other in all countries. Some differences mostly in the IDQoL assessment were found. Conclusion: Despite some reported peculiarities, parents in different counties assessed QoL and family QoL of their AD children in a similar way. The IDQoL and the DFI may be reliable initial measures for international studies. International study on the influence of the same treatment methods on the IDQoL and the DFI assessments is important.

Concepts: Family, Evaluation, Parent, Quality, Quality of life, Assessment, Difference, Mother


Trichilemmal cyst, also known as “pilar cyst,” is a benign cyst containing keratin and its breakdown products with a wall resembling external root sheath of hair. It occurs mostly in females as a solitary firm nodule over scalp. Occurrence of multiple trichilemmal cysts in areas other than scalp is extremely rare. We are reporting a case of a 40-years-old female who presented with multiple calcified trichilemmal cysts in multicentric distribution associated with alopecia universalis. Similar complaints were present in elder sister of the patient, indicating a genetic background. Multicentric distribution of trichilemmal cysts, calcification, familial occurrence, and association with alopecia universalis seen in our case are all rare and intriguing features.

Concepts: Family, Female, Gamete, Sebaceous cyst, Cyst, Sibling, Trichilemmal cyst


Glutathione is a low molecular weight thiol-tripeptide that plays a prominent role in maintaining intracellular redox balance. In addition to its remarkable antioxidant properties, the discovery of its antimelanogenic properties has led to its promotion as a skin-lightening agent. It is widely used for this indication in some ethnic populations. However, there is a dichotomy between evidence to support its efficacy and safety. The hype around its depigmentary properties may be a marketing gimmick of pharma-cosmeceutical companies. This review focuses on the various aspects of glutathione: its metabolism, mechanism of action and the scientific evidence to evaluate its efficacy as a systemic skin-lightening agent. Glutathione is present intracellularly in its reduced form and plays an important role in various physiological functions. Its skin-lightening effects result from direct as well as indirect inhibition of the tyrosinase enzyme and switching from eumelanin to phaeomelanin production. It is available in oral, parenteral and topical forms. Although the use of intravenous glutathione injections is popular, there is no evidence to prove its efficacy. In fact, the adverse effects caused by intravenous glutathione have led the Food and Drug Administration of Philippines to issue a public warning condemning its use for off-label indications such as skin lightening. Currently, there are three randomized controlled trials that support the skin-lightening effect and good safety profile of topical and oral glutathione. However, key questions such as the duration of treatment, longevity of skin-lightening effect and maintenance protocols remain unanswered. More randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials with larger sample size, long-term follow-up and well-defined efficacy outcomes are warranted to establish the relevance of this molecule in disorders of hyperpigmentation and skin lightening.

Concepts: Antioxidant, Randomized controlled trial, Effectiveness, Sun tanning, Evidence, Hydroquinone, Skin whitening, Whiteness in Japanese culture



We report a case of a patient with Cushing’s disease with oseltamivir-induced toxic epidermal necrolysis, who was treated with cyclosporine with favorable evolution. There is only one case reported of Cushing’s disease and toxic epidermal necrolysis and very few oseltamivir-induced toxic epidermal necrolysis cases in literature. This report also discusses the role that the preexisting hypercortisolism condition may have played in the development and favorable resolution of the toxic epidermal necrolysis.


Female pattern hair loss (FPHL) is a common cause of hair loss in women characterized by diffuse reduction in hair density over the crown and frontal scalp with retention of the frontal hairline. Its prevalence increases with advancing age and is associated with significant psychological morbidity. The pathophysiology of FPHL is still not completely understood and seems to be multifactorial. Although androgens have been implicated, the involvement of androgen-independent mechanisms is evident from frequent lack of clinical or biochemical markers of hyperandrogenism in affected women. The role of genetic polymorphisms involving the androgen and estrogen receptors is being increasingly recognized in its causation and predicting treatment response to anti-androgens. There are different clinical patterns and classifications of FPHL, knowledge of which facilitates patient management and research. Chronic telogen effluvium remains as the most important differential diagnosis. Thorough history, clinical examination, and evaluation are essential to confirm diagnosis. Patients with clinical signs of androgen excess require assessment of biochemical parameters and imaging studies. It is prudent to screen the patients for metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular risk factors. The treatment comprises medical and/or surgical modalities. Medical treatment should be initiated early as it effectively arrests hair loss progression rather than stimulating regrowth. Minoxidil continues to be the first line therapy whereas anti-androgens form the second line of treatment. The progressive nature of FPHL mandates long-term treatment for sustained effect. Medical therapy may be supplemented with cosmetic concealment in those desirous of greater hair density. Surgery may be worthwhile in some carefully selected patients.

Concepts: Medicine, The Canon of Medicine, Estrogen, Therapy, Medical diagnosis, Differential diagnosis, Medical error, Telogen effluvium


Dermatophytosis is becoming increasingly unresponsive to conventional antifungals. Newer topical antifungals may be more effective in these patients.


Background: Toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN) is a severe adverse drug reaction associated with high mortality. Though different modalities of treatment are advocated, there is no consensus regarding specific therapy. Corticosteroids have shown conflicting results and for high dose intravenous immunoglobulins (IVIG), cost is a limiting factor. Aim: To find out the effectiveness of combination therapy with low-dose IVIG and steroids versus steroids alone in our TEN patients. Methods: After obtaining Ethical Committee approval, 36 consecutive TEN patients (2008-2012) were alternately allocated to 2 groups - Group A was given combination of low-dose IVIG (0.2-0.5 g/kg) and rapidly tapering course of steroids (intravenous dexamethasone 0.1- 0.3 mg/kg/day tapered in 1-2 weeks) while Group B was given same dose of steroids alone. Outcome parameters assessed were time taken for arrest of disease progression, time taken for re-epithelization, duration of hospital stay and mortality rates. Results: Both groups had 18 patients. Baseline characteristics like age, sex ratio, SCORTEN, body surface area involvement and treatment interval were comparable. Time for arrest of disease progression and for re-epithelization was significantly lowered in Group A (P = 0.0001, P = 0.0009 respectively). Though duration of hospital stay and deaths were less in Group A, difference was not statistically significant. SCORTEN based standardized mortality ratio (SMR) analysis revealed that combination therapy reduced the probability of dying by 82% (SMR = 0.18 ± 0.36) and steroids by 37% (SMR = 0.63 ± 0.71). Difference in SMR was statistically significant (P = 0.00001). No significant side effects due to either modality were found in any of the patients. Conclusion: Combination therapy with low-dose IVIG and steroids is more effective in terms of reduced mortality and faster disease resolution when compared to steroids alone in TEN.

Concepts: Immune system, Epidemiology, Death, Corticosteroid, Adverse drug reaction, Intravenous immunoglobulin, Modality, Toxic epidermal necrolysis


Mongolian spots (MS) are birthmarks that are present at birth and their most common location is sacrococcygeal or lumbar area. Lesions may be single or multiple and usually involve < 5% total body surface area. They are macular and round, oval or irregular in shape. The color varies from blue to greenish, gray, black or a combination of any of the above. The size varies from few to more than 20 centimetres. Pigmentation is most intense at the age of one year and gradually fades thereafter. It is rarely seen after the age of 6 years. Aberrant MS over occiput, temple, mandibular area, shoulders and limbs may be confused with other dermal melanocytoses and bruises secondary to child abuse, thus necessitating documentation at birth. Although regarded as benign, recent data suggest that MS may be associated with inborn errors of metabolism and neurocristopathies. Mongolian spots usually resolve by early childhood and hence no treatment is generally needed if they are located in the sacral area. However, sometimes it may be required for extrasacral lesions for cosmesis.

Concepts: The Age, Color, Childhood, White, Primary color, Area, Inborn error of metabolism, Magenta


The effectiveness of finasteride and dutasteride in women with androgenetic alopecia has been the subject of debate.

Concepts: Baldness treatments