An iatrogenic epidemic of benign meningioma.
Head irradiation, the acceptable mode of treatment for tinea capitis in the past, is recognized today as a causative factor for meningioma. This treatment was applied en mass to immigrants coming to Israel from North Africa and the Middle East during the 1950s. In order to estimate the effect of the differential radiation treatment on the rates of meningioma in the total population, the authors assessed time trends of this disease in Israel over the past 40 years by main ethnic origin. Cohort analysis shows a marked incidence rise in the North African-born cohorts born in 1940-1954 starting from the 1980s. A similar pattern is seen in the Middle Eastern born, although the increase is not as sharp. In consequence, there is a crossover of the interethnic incidence curves in the 1940-1949 cohort. Comparison of the relative risk between 1940-1954 cohorts that comprised most of the irradiated with 1930-1939 cohorts, who were largely free of the radiation, shows that the North African born have the largest relative risk of 4.62, followed by the Middle Eastern born, with a relative risk of 1.95, while the European-American born have a relative risk close to 1. The differences between the three areas of birth are statistically significant. The data illustrate the potential risk of administering highly potent therapy for an essentially benign disease that led, in turn, to a drastic change in the national meningioma pattern. (+info)
Practical management of hair loss.
OBJECTIVE: To describe an organized diagnostic approach for both nonscarring and scarring alopecias to help family physicians establish an accurate in-office diagnosis. To explain when ancillary laboratory workup is necessary to confirm the diagnosis. QUALITY OF EVIDENCE: Current diagnostic and therapeutic interventions for hair loss are based on randomized controlled studies, uncontrolled studies, and case series. MEDLINE was searched from January 1966 to December 1998 with the MeSH words alopecia, hair, and alopecia areata. Articles were selected on the basis of experimental design, with priority given to the most current large multicentre controlled studies. Overall global evidence for therapeutic intervention for hair loss is quite strong. MAIN MESSAGE: The most common forms of nonscarring alopecias are androgenic alopecia, telogen effluvium, and alopecia areata. Other disorders include trichotillomania, traction alopecia, tinea capitis, and hair shaft abnormalities. Scarring alopecia is caused by trauma, infections, discoid lupus erythematosus, or lichen planus. Key to establishing an accurate diagnosis is a detailed history, including medication use, systemic illnesses, endocrine dysfunction, hair-care practices, and family history. All hair-bearing sites should be examined. A 4-mm punch biopsy of the scalp is useful, particularly to diagnose scarring alopecias. Once a diagnosis has been established, specific therapy can be initiated. CONCLUSIONS: Diagnosis and management of hair loss is an interesting challenge for family physicians. An organized approach to recognizing characteristic differential features of hair loss disorders is key to diagnosis and management. (+info)
Tinea capitis: study of asymptomatic carriers and sick adolescents, adults and elderly who live with children with the disease.
Tinea capitis is a dermatophyte infection that occurs mainly in childhood; there are few reports, in Brazil, in adolescents and adults. The detection of asymptomatic carriers is of great importance in the disease control. From February 1998 to February 1999, a study was performed at the outpatient Dermatologic Unit of Instituto de Puericultura e Pediatria Martagao Gesteira (Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brasil) to verify the frequency of asymptomatic carriers and tinea capitis between 79 adolescents, adults and elderly who lived in the same household of 56 children (0-12 years) with tinea capitis. Of these, one female and one male adults (2.5%) were asymptomatic carriers and the cultures revealed Trichophyton tonsurans and Microsporum canis respectively. One female adolescent and two female adults (3.8%) had tinea capitis and all cultures revealed Trichophyton tonsurans. The study has shown that adolescents and adults who live in the same household of children with tinea capitis may be sick or asymptomatic carriers. (+info)
Tinea capitis infection in school children of Nepal.
From among 428 Nepalese schoolchildren hair samples of 102 children with clinical features of tinea capitis, obtained by the sterile hairbrush method, were examined by mycological techniques. Age varied between 4-16 years. Itching was experienced by 96.1% sample subjects and hair loss by 32.4%. Of the 102, 11 (10.8%) were positive for Trichophyton violaceum (TV), 6 being from urban areas, the rest from rural areas. Amongst the 11 patients, 7 (63.6%) were girls and rest boys. Statistical associations were observed between the place of haircut and isolation of the organism (chi2 = 15.2, p <0.01). Statistical association was also present between frequency of bathing and isolation of organism. Sharing of combs was associated with the culture-positive subjects. The prevalence of tinea capitis in the urban and rural children was 2.3% and 3.0%, respectively. The only isolated organism was TV. An association of the isolation of TV was found with risk factors such as family members, sharing of combs, frequency of bathing with the organism. Hair loss was more common in the urban children. Discouragement of sharing combs, increased frequency of hair washing, and use of uncontaminated hair cutting instruments are recommended. (+info)
A possible association between ionizing radiation and pituitary adenoma: a descriptive study.
BACKGROUND: Despite the recognition of ionizing radiation as a causal risk factor for a variety of solid tumors (including brain tumors), to date, such an association with pituitary adenoma (PA) has not been demonstrated. METHODS: To evaluate a possible association between past exposure to radiation and the occurrence of PA, the authors reviewed about 4900 medical records of patients who had been irradiated in childhood for tinea capitis. An additional search for patients was performed using the Israel Cancer Registry. The average radiation dose to the pituitary gland was estimated as 0.56 grays, and, for all patients, a meticulous validation of the irradiation was performed. RESULTS: A group of 16 patients who developed symptomatic PA after childhood exposure to radiotherapy were identified. Overall, the clinical and demographic characteristics of these patients were similar to other series reported in the literature. There was an apparently high rate of second primary tumors (25%), all of them in the irradiated area, diagnosed among this group. The methodologic issues that limit the demonstration of a possible association between radiation and PA and the epidemiologic and experimental findings in the literature are discussed. CONCLUSIONS: In view of the ample amount of evidence identifying low-dose ionizing radiation as a risk factor for a number of intracranial tumors as well as for tumors arising in endocrine organs, a radiation immunity of the pituitary gland is difficult to accept. Hence, the authors suggest that this series should be considered as preliminary observation that supports the role of ionizing radiation in the development of this tumor. (+info)
Secondary bacterial infection in skin lesions is a common problem. This review summarises a series of studies of the microbiology of several of these infections: scabies, psoriasis, poison ivy, atopic dermatitis, eczema herpeticum and kerion. Staphylococcus aureus and group A beta-haemolytic streptococci were the most prevalent aerobes and were isolated from all body sites. In contrast, organisms that reside in the mucous membranes close to the lesions predominated in infections next to these membranes. In this fashion, enteric gram-negative bacilli and Bacteroides spp. were found most often in buttock and leg lesions. The probable sources of these organisms are the rectum and vagina, where they normally reside. Group A beta-haemolytic streptococci, pigmented Prevotella and Porphyromonas spp. and Fusobacterium spp. were most commonly found in lesions of the head, face, neck and fingers. These organisms probably reached these sites from the oral cavity, where they are part of the normal flora. This review highlights the polymicrobial aerobic-anaerobic microbiology of secondarily infected skin lesions. (+info)
Common hair loss disorders.
Hair loss (alopecia) affects men and women of all ages and often significantly affects social and psychologic well-being. Although alopecia has several causes, a careful history, dose attention to the appearance of the hair loss, and a few simple studies can quickly narrow the potential diagnoses. Androgenetic alopecia, one of the most common forms of hair loss, usually has a specific pattern of temporal-frontal loss in men and central thinning in women. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved topical minoxidil to treat men and women, with the addition of finasteride for men. Telogen effluvium is characterized by the loss of "handfuls" of hair, often following emotional or physical stressors. Alopecia areata, trichotillomania, traction alopecia, and tinea capitis have unique features on examination that aid in diagnosis. Treatment for these disorders and telogen effluvium focuses on resolution of the underlying cause. (+info)
Ant-induced alopecia: report of 2 cases and review of the literature.
Localized scalp hair loss is associated with many processes, including alopecia areata, trichotillomania, tinea capitis, and early lupus erythematosus. There are several reports of localized alopecia after tick- and flea-bites and bee stings, but there are only two reports of ant-induced alopecia in the literature. We present two cases of alopecia induced by ants of genus Pheidole (species pallidula) and review the literature for insect-induced alopecia. Ant-induced alopecia should be considered in the differential diagnosis of localized sudden-onset alopecia, at least in some geographic areas of the world. (+info)