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Multicentric reticulohistiocytosis: a lesson in screening for malignancy

Rheumatology (Oxford, England) (Impact Factor: 4.44). 08/2008; 47(7):1102-3. DOI: 10.1093/rheumatology/ken131
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    ABSTRACT: Multicentric reticulohistiocytosis (MRH) and fibroblastic rheumatism (FR) are uncommon disorders with similar joint and skin manifestations. They are usually included among the non-Langerhans histiocytoses, but recent insights drive some criticism. The diagnosis is often challenging and must be confirmed by the histological typical features. If the skin manifestations are missing, the arthritic complaints may be confused with those of other rheumatic disorders. In these cases, only a careful clinical and radiological evaluation leads to the correct diagnosis. The natural course of the diseases may rapidly develop into disabling manifestations, making an aggressive treatment strongly recommendable. There is emerging evidence that anti-tumour necrosis factor-α agents and bisphosphonates are promising drugs for MRH, while a course of methotrexate and steroids seems to be the best option for FR. Finally, the clinician should be aware that in many cases MRH, but not FR, is associated with a large number of systemic manifestations and with malignancy. This eventuality must be accurately ruled out.
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    ABSTRACT: Many malignancies affecting the internal organs display cutaneous manifestations which may be either specific (tumor metastases) or nonspecific lesions. The study is aimed at determining the frequency and significance of cutaneous manifestations among patients with internal malignancy. 750 cases of proven internal malignancy, who attended a cancer chemotherapy center in South India, were studied. Specific infiltrates were confirmed by histopathology, fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC) and marker studies. Out of the 750 patients with internal malignancy, skin changes were seen in a total of 52 (6.93%) patients. Cutaneous metastases (specific lesions) were seen in 20 patients (2.66%): contiguous in 6 (0.8%), and non-contiguous in 14 (1.86%). Nonspecific skin changes were seen in 32 patients (4.26%). None of our patients presented with more than one type of skin lesions. Herpes zoster was the most common nonspecific lesion noticed in our patients, followed by generalized pruritus, multiple eruptive seborrheic keratoses, bullous disorder, erythroderma, flushing, purpura, pyoderma gangrenosum, insect bite allergy and lichenoid dermatitis.
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