Acquired Perforating Dermatosis: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

Acquired perforating dermatosis is a rather rare skin disorder which develops in individuals undergoing dialysis. The exact cause is unknown; however, some researchers postulate that it occurs due to a metabolic imbalance in the body.

The disorder is typified by the presence of numerous papules on the body, especially, on the head, neck and trunk region and is accompanied by itching.

Symptoms Of Acquired Perforating Dermatosis

The signs and symptoms of Acquired perforating dermatosis are:

  • Multiple papules on the skin with a central keratotic top.
  • The papules develop on the head, neck, chest, back, arms, and the trunk.
  • The eruptions are very itchy.

The complications associated with APD are:

  • Chronic and intense itching and subsequent scratching can result in scarring of the skin.
  • Emotional and psychological stress is a common fall-out of the condition.
  • Bacterial and fungal infections are fairly common complications. Acquired perforating dermatosis is associated with constant itching and scaling of the skin, and this provides an appropriate environment for microbes to thrive.

Causes Of Acquired Perforating Dermatosis

  • A significant risk factor for the development of acquired perforating dermatosis is undergoing dialysis.
  • Also, having a liver disorder, kidney failure, poorly controlled diabetes mellitus and infections such as scabies, AIDS, increase your susceptibility to the disorder.
  • The exact cause of for the occurrence of acquired perforating dermatosis is not known.
  • Research says it is because of the formation of abnormal mineral deposits which set off a metabolic imbalance in the body.

Treatment For Acquired Perforating Dermatosis

Based on the medical history and physical examination, the diagnosis is made. The signs and symptoms and a dialysis history are usually conclusive. A skin biopsy may be required in some cases. Your dermatologist will examine the skin using a special magnified lens, called a dermatoscope. A skin biopsy is carried out and sent to a laboratory for a pathological exam.

Based upon the symptoms and the medical history, the treatment regimen is decided. Treatment strategies which are usually employed for the management of acquired perforating dermatosis are:

  • Treating the underlying medical condition (which is usually the trigger for the disorder) is very important. It is necessary to manage kidney diseases and kidney failure appropriately. Also, if there is a liver disorder, it is crucial to tackle the problem successfully.
  • It is vital to ensure that the blood sugar level remains normal.
  • Symptomatic and systemic treatment for infections is important as well.
  • Use of topical steroids is recommended.
  • Photo-therapy also helps treat the condition well.
  • Your health care provider will also prescribe vitamin A supplements and creams to manage the papules.
  • Cryotherapy also treats the condition successfully. Low temperature is used to remove the skin lesions.
  • You must also always use a mild antibacterial soap and apply warm and cool compresses to manage the irritation and itching.
  • Follow-ups with your dermatologist and regular checkups are important.
  • Do not scratch the affected area; it increases chance of infection.
  • A comfortable, cool bath soothes the skin; however, steer clear of too much washing and scrubbing of your skin.
  • Wear smooth cotton clothes to avoid friction and rubbing and consequent skin irritation.
  • Never use strong smelling soaps, shampoos and detergents.
  • Use a spray mist to keep the affected area moist.