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Giornale Italiano di Dermatologia e Venereologia 2017 October;152(5):500-15

DOI: 10.23736/S0392-0488.17.05720-0

Copyright © 2017 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Invisible dermatoses from the perspective of the dermatopathologist: new observations

Carlo TOMASINI

Dermatologic Clinic, San Matteo Polyclinic and Institute for Research and Care, Pavia, Italy


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The term “invisible dermatoses” is often used in two different contexts: 1) dermatoses which are invisible to the clinician, i.e., diseases with no significant clinical features; 2) dermatoses which are invisible to the pathologist. These latter comprise a wide spectrum of entities which present with definite and obvious clinical features, but subtle or hidden histological features and are therefore “invisible” histologically. Diagnosis of such diseases represents a great challenge to both the dermatologist and dermatopathologist. The list of such diseases, originally comprising only few entities, has been gradually expanded over decades and now is a large one. This review focuses on the recently expanded spectrum of such diseases, and offers to the dermatopathologist a strategy for their diagnosis, based mainly on proper awareness, recognition of subtle features, special stains, special investigations such as immunofluorescence and histochemistry and proper clinicopathological correlation.


KEY WORDS: Skin diseases - Diagnosis - Pathology - Hydroxyurea - Hemosiderosis

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