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Dermatology Online Journal

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Skin wrinkling of the upper arms: a case of mid-dermal elastolysis


Mid-dermal elastolysis is a rare acquired elastic tissue disorder with about 100 cases reported in the literature. It is characterized by localized patches of finely wrinkled skin on the shoulder and upper extremities and a band-like loss of elastic tissue in the mid-dermal layer on biopsy. Some patients may have symptoms of discomfort, erythema, and/or pruritis. Mid-dermal elastolysis is predominantly seen in young to middle-aged Caucasian females and extensive skin involvement may lead to cosmetic concerns. Furthermore, it is important to rule out other disorders of elastic fiber that are associated with systemic involvement. We present a case of MDE, discuss the differential diagnosis, and describe characteristic clinical features and histology findings of each condition.

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