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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2000 December;55(12):881-5

language: Italian

Non progressive, late-onset localized atrophy of the cheek

Sonnino M., Ribuffo D., Piovano L., Cigna E., Scuderi N.


Lipodystrophies are rare conditions in which the most remarkable feature is an atrophy of the subcutaneous tissues. Until two decades ago, they were all considered under the name of ''lipoatrophic diabetes'', and only recently they have been properly classified. Currently four syndromes are recognized: congenital total lipodystrophy, late onset or acquired lipodystrophy, cephalothoracic or partial progressive lipodystrophy and partial facesparing lipodystrophy. We report the case of a 73-year-old patient, long distance bus driver, who presented to our clinic for the correction of a malar atrophy located on the left side of his face. Until he was 48 years old his appearance was normal, but at the time he reports the slow onset of a facial atrophy which was confined to the cheek. The atrophy was very slowly progressing, so that at this moment at 73 years of age he presented to our observation for the correction of the asymmetry. Clinical examination and history oriented us towards a variation of Parry-Romberg's syndrome characterized by a non progressive late onset hemifacial atrophy. No muscle or bony involvement is present. No other important abnormalities, excluding a moderate hyperglycemia have been observed. A biopsy of the region shows a marked elastosis and a complete atrophy of the subcutaneous fat. Correction of the deformity was achieved with autologous fat injection and was still satisfactory after one year.

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