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A Journal on Internal Medicine

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Panminerva Medica 2002 December;44(4):349-52

language: English

Prevalence and clinical features of skin diseases in chronic HCV infection. A prospective study in 96 patients

Paoletti V., Mammarella A., Basili S., Paradiso M., Di Franco M., De Matteis A., Musca A.

Department of Medical Therapy University “La Sapienza” of Rome, Rome, Italy


Background. Between ­extra-hepat­ic man­i­fes­ta­tions of hep­a­titis C ­virus (HCV) infec­tion par­tic­u­lar inter­est is ­focused on ­some der­mat­o­log­i­cal dis­eas­es ­such as: leu­ko­cy­to­clas­tic vas­cu­litis, ­oral ­lichen pla­nus, prur­it­us-urti­car­ia, pso­ri­a­sis, etc.
The aim of this study was to determine the prev­a­lence of ­some der­ma­tos­es in our pop­u­la­tion of ­patients ­with HCV infec­tion and ­describe the ­more char­ac­ter­is­tics clin­i­cal pic­tures.
Methods. Ninety-six ­patients (36 men and 60 wom­en) ­aged ­from 35 to 74 years ­with HCV doc­u­ment­ed by ­3rd gen­er­a­tion ­ELISA and ­RIBA ­tests ­were pros­pec­tive­ly exam­ined for 3 ­years to deter­mi­ne the prev­a­lence of ­some ­skin dis­or­ders, report­ed as asso­ciat­ed ­with HCV infec­tion. All ­patients ­were ­also stud­ied for pres­ence and quan­tifi­ca­tion of HCV-RNA by poly­me­rase ­chain reac­tion and gen­o­typ­ing ­when pos­sible. Eighty-one under­went a liv­er biop­sy. Routine labor­a­to­ry ­tests and ­some immu­no­log­i­cal inves­ti­ga­tions (ANA, AMA, SMA, LKM, ­ANCA, ICC, crioglobulins) ­were per­formed ­using stan­dard pro­ce­dures and indi­rect immu­no­flu­o­res­cence, nephel­o­met­ric, RIA meth­ods.
Results. Twelve of 96 ­patients (12.5%) pre­sent­ed ­skin dis­or­ders in ­progress of chron­ic ­virus C hep­a­titis: 5 cas­es of leu­ko­cy­to­clas­tic vas­cu­litis (LCV) by ­mixed cryo­glo­bu­li­ne­mia, 1 ­case of prur­it­us, 2 cas­es of ­oral ­lichen pla­nus (OLP), 2 cas­es of alo­pe­cia area­ta, 1 ­case of urti­car­ia, 1 ­case of pso­ri­a­sis.
Conclusions. Our find­ings ­show a cal­cu­lat­ed prev­a­lence of clin­i­cal der­ma­tos­es in HCV infect­ed ­patients ­around 12.5%. These find­ings con­firm how­ev­er the impor­tance of liv­er exam­ina­tion in pres­ence of ­skin dis­eas­es not relat­ed to oth­er pathog­e­net­ic mech­a­nisms.

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