Cutaneous mucinoses

Author: Dr Julie Smith MBChB, Dept of Dermatology, Grenlane Hospital, Auckland, New Zealand, 2005.

What are mucinoses?

Mucinoses are a diverse group of uncommon skin disorders. All involve accumulation in the skin of abnormal amounts of mucin. This is a jelly-like complex carbohydrate substance, called hyaluronic acid, that occurs normally as part of the connective tissue in the dermis or mid-layer of the skin. The abnormal deposits that occur in mucinoses can be localised or widespread. They vary from minor cosmetic nuisances to potentially severe conditions involving internal organs. The underlying cause of this group of disorders is not well understood.

Extensive or generalised mucinoses include:

Localised mucinoses include:

Deposits of mucin also occur as a result of other skin disorders (secondary mucinoses).

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