Microvascular abnormalities in Sjogren's syndrome: nailfold capillaroscopy.
OBJECTIVE: To describe microvascular abnormalities by nailfold capillaroscopy in patients with primary Sjogren's syndrome (SS) with or without Raynaud's phenomenon (RP) and those with anticentromere antibodies (ACA). METHODS: Forty patients with SS (14 without RP, 16 with RP, 10 with ACA), 20 patients with scleroderma (SSc) (10 with limited and 10 with diffuse disease) (disease control group) and 40 healthy controls (control group) were evaluated by nailfold capillaroscopy. RESULTS: Capillaroscopic abnormalities in SS ranged from non-specific findings (crossed capillaries) to more specific findings (confluent haemorrhages and pericapillary haemorrhages) or scleroderma-type findings. SS patients with RP presented capillary abnormalities in higher frequency than patients without RP. The majority of SS patients with ACA (80%) presented scleroderma-type findings. CONCLUSION: Nailfold capillaroscopy can be used as a simple non-invasive method to evaluate the microvascular abnormalities in SS patients, especially in those with RP and those with ACA. (+info)
A case of melanonychia caused by Exophiala dermatitidis.
We report a case of a healthy 61-year-old woman with discoloration of the nail on her right big toe. We first treated her with topical steroid and urea under suspected diagnosis of nail eczema, but the lesion remained. In culture, black, shiny, pasty and yeast-like colonies grew repeatedly. Examination of debris from her nail showed dematiaceous spherical cells and hyphal elements. Microscopically, annelloconidia were produced at the apical ends of anellidic conidiogenous cells. This colony grew at 40C. Mitochondrial DNA restriction fragment length polymorphism was analysed in this strain and its restriction pattern confirmed the isolate to be Exophiala dermatitidis. Based on these findings, we diagnosed this nail deformity as fungal melanonychia due to Exophiala dermatitidis. This is the third reported case of this disease. (+info)
Assignment of the gene for a new hereditary nail disorder, isolated congenital nail dysplasia, to chromosome 17p13.
Isolated congenital nail dysplasia is an autosomal dominant disorder recently observed in a large family from southern Germany. The disorder is characterized by longitudinal streaks, thinning, and impaired formation of the nail plates leading to increased vulnerability of the free nail margins. In most cases, all fingernails and toenails are similarly involved with some accentuation of the thumb and great toenails. Histologic changes include hypergranulosis of the nail matrix and epithelial outgrowths from the nail bed. Patients do not show any alterations of hair growth and dentition, no malfunction of sweat glands and sensory organs, and no skeletal abnormalities. Isolated congenital nail dysplasia manifests from the first year of life with variable expressivity. In order to localize chromosomally the gene underlying isolated congenital nail dysplasia, linkage to the known keratin gene cluster regions on chromosomes 12q12 and 17q21 was ruled out first. The analysis of 150 microsatellite markers on various chromosomes mapped the isolated congenital nail dysplasia gene to the 6 cM interval between markers at D17S926 and D17S1528 on chromosome 17p13. Markers at D17S849, D17S 1840, and D17S1529 co-segregated completely with the isolated congenital nail dysplasia locus. The maximum two-point LOD score was found for the marker at D17S 1840 (Zmax = 6.72 at Thetamax = 0.00). The identified region harbors no currently known genes involved in skin or nail abnormalities. Isolated congenital nail dysplasia probably represents a novel isolated defect of nail development. The localization of this gene is, therefore, the first step towards the identification of a new factor in nail formation. (+info)
Differentiation between primary and secondary Raynaud's phenomenon: a prospective study comparing nailfold capillaroscopy using an ophthalmoscope or stereomicroscope.
BACKGROUND: Nailfold capillary microscopy is a routine procedure in the investigation of patients with Raynaud's phenomenon (RP). As a standard method, nailfold capillary morphology is inspected with a stereomicroscope to look for capillary abnormalities such as giant loops, avascular areas, and bushy capillaries, which have all been found to be associated with certain connective tissue diseases. AIM: To investigate prospectively whether nailfold capillary inspection using an ophthalmoscope is of equivalent diagnostic value to standard nailfold capillary microscopy. METHOD: All the fingers of 26 patients with RP were examined in a blinded fashion and compared with the final diagnosis one month later. RESULTS: All giant loops, large avascular areas, and bushy capillaries were identified by both methods. The correlation for moderate avascular areas and crossed capillaries was 0.93 and 0.955 respectively. The correlation for minor abnormalities that do not contribute to the differentiation between primary and secondary RP was 0.837 and 0.861 respectively. All patients were classified identically by the two methods. CONCLUSION: For the evaluation of patients with RP, nailfold capillary morphology can reliably be assessed with an ophthalmoscope. (+info)
Yellow nail syndrome: does protein leakage play a role?
Yellow nail syndrome is characterized by primary lymphoedema, recurrent pleural effusion and yellow discoloration of the nails. Although mechanical lymphatic obstruction is assumed to be the underlying pathology, it cannot explain the common finding of high albumin concentration in the pleural space. This paper describes a case of yellow nail syndrome presenting with the classical triad of lymphoedema, recurrent pleural effusion and yellow discoloration of the nails, associated with persistent hypoalbuminaemia and increased enteric loss of albumin. Based on the findings in this case and those in the literature, it is speculated that increased microvascular permeability may contribute to the pathogenesis of this syndrome. (+info)
Pesticides as a cause of occupational skin diseases in farmers.
Pesticides are chemical substances used in agricultural production to protect crops against pests. They help to achieve better quality and quantity of crops; however, they also are capable of causing occupational diseases in farmers. Skin is the most exposed organ while spraying the pesticide on fields. Farmers are also exposed to pesticides while mixing, loading the pesticide as well as while cleaning the equipment and disposing of empty containers. Other activities associated with exposure are sowing pesticide-preserved seeds, weeding and harvesting previously sprayed crops. During the first decades of using pesticides the main problem was the risk of acute intoxication among people occupationally exposed. With decrease in the toxicity of improved pesticides, attention was turned to chronic intoxication and environmental contamination. Nowadays, the problem of diseases not immediately related to the toxic potential of pesticides gains increasing interest. The majority of these non-toxic diseases are dermatoses. Most pesticide-related dermatoses are contact dermatitis, both allergic or irritant. Rare clinical forms also occur, including urticaria, erythema multiforme, ashy dermatosis, parakeratosis variegata, porphyria cutanea tarda, chloracne, skin hypopigmentation, nail and hair disorders. Farmers exposed to arsenic pesticides are at risk of occupational skin cancer, mostly morbus Bowen (carcinoma in situ), multiple basal cell carcinomas and squamous cell carcinomas. Non-arsenic pesticides, e.g. paraquat, are also potentially carcinogenic. (+info)
Outbreak of sternal surgical site infections due to Pseudomonas aeruginosa traced to a scrub nurse with onychomycosis.
From 19 February 1999 through 31 October 1999, 16 (8.6%) of 185 patients who underwent median sternotomy developed infections with Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Seven patients had mediastinitis, 5 had deep sternal wound infection, 2 had superficial sternal wound infection, 1 had prosthetic valve endocarditis, and 1 had sepsis. Pulsed-field gel electrophoresis confirmed that all 13 isolates that were available for typing were the same strain. Cultures of hand specimens identified 1 nurse from whom the same strain of P. aeruginosa was repeatedly isolated; the nurse had been in contact with all 16 infected patients. Investigation revealed that the nurse had severe onycholysis and onychomycosis of the right thumbnail. Cultures of samples of this nail's subungual region and of multiple cosmetic products from the nurse's home yielded the identical P. aeruginosa strain. This outbreak of surgical site infections due to P. aeruginosa was caused by wound contamination from the thumbnail of this nurse, despite her appropriate use of latex surgical gloves. (+info)
Discovery of a novel murine keratin 6 (K6) isoform explains the absence of hair and nail defects in mice deficient for K6a and K6b.
The murine genome is known to have two keratin 6 (K6) genes, mouse K6 (MK6)a and MK6b. These genes display a complex expression pattern with constitutive expression in the epithelia of oral mucosa, hair follicles, and nail beds. We generated mice deficient for both genes through embryonic stem cell technology. The majority of MK6a/b-/- mice die of starvation within the first two weeks of life. This is due to a localized disintegration of the dorsal tongue epithelium, which results in the build up of a plaque of cell debris that severely impairs feeding. However, approximately 25% of MK6a/b-/- mice survive to adulthood. Remarkably, the surviving MK6a/b-/- mice have normal hair and nails. To our surprise, we discovered MK6 staining both in the hair follicle and the nail bed of MK6a/b-/- mice, indicating the presence of a third MK6 gene. We cloned this previously unknown murine keratin gene and found it to be highly homologous to human K6hf, which is expressed in hair follicles. We therefore termed this gene MK6 hair follicle (MK6hf). The presence of MK6hf in the MK6a/b-/- follicles and nails offers an explanation for the absence of hair and nail defects in MK6a/b-/- animals. (+info)