Author: Dr Beth Wright, Medical Registrar, Perth, Australia, 2012.
What is linearfocalelastosis?
Linearfocalelastosis is an uncommon dermalelastosis (elastosis refers to degenerative changes in elastic fibres). Only 24 cases have been reported since it was first described in 1989 .
What does linearfocalelastosis look like?
To the naked eye linearfocalelastosis appears as yellow, palpable lines or striae, usually extending horizontally over the lower back or legs.
Who does linearfocalelastosis affect?
There are more cases of linearfocalelastosis reported in males than in females, and the age of affected individuals ranges between seven and 89 years . There is no evidence of any racial or ethnic predilection .
How does linearfocalelastosis present?
Linearfocalelastosis is usually asymptomatic and is diagnosed incidentally.
It has most commonly been reported to affect the lumbar back region, however there are also reports of linearfocalelastosis on the trunk, lower limbs and face [4,5].
How is linearfocalelastosis diagnosed?
Linearfocalelastosis is diagnosed clinically by its appearance and distribution, and on skin biopsy. Histology shows a focal increase in abnormal elastic fibres in the dermis.
What causes linearfocalelastosis?
The pathogenesis of linearfocalelastosis is uncertain.
There are several reports of linearfocalelastosis and striae distensae (stretch marks) co existing in the same distribution in affected individuals [1,3]. It has been proposed that linearfocalelastosis may represent excessive regeneration of damaged elastic fibres as part of the repair process of striae distensae . However some authors have disputed this, due to differing clinical and histopathological appearances of the disorders.
How is linearfocalelastosis treated?
No effective treatment has been described.
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