Cutaneous changes in chronic alcoholics

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Background: Alcohol consumption can have a variety of cutaneous manifestations. Awareness of the cutaneous changes of alcohol abuse can allow early detection and intervention in an attempt to limit the adverse medical consequences. Hence a study was planned to determine the cutaneous changes in chronic alcoholics. Aims: To determine the cutaneous changes in chronic alcoholics. Methods: All the patients attending alcohol de-addiction camps were examined for cutaneous changes. The results were analyzed using Gausian test and compared with other reports. Results: Out of 200 alcoholics examined for cutaneous changes, 182 (91%) had cutaneous, nail, hair or oral cavity changes. Nail changes were found in 51 (25.5%) alcoholics, koilonychia being the commonest (16%). Oral changes were present in 107 (53.5%) alcoholics and changes due to nutritional deficiency in 20 (10%). Diseases due to poor hygiene were seen in 55 (27.5%) alcoholics. Tinea versicolor (14%) and seborrheic dermatitis (11.5%) were the commonest cutaneous changes noted. Conclusion: Even though alcohol abuse has a variety of cutaneous manifestations and perhaps aggravates many diseases, there are no specific cutaneous signs of alcoholism. Knowledge of the spectrum of cutaneous manifestations of alcohol abuse can allow its early detection and treatment in an attempt to minimize the medical consequences.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-81
Number of pages3
JournalIndian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 01-03-2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Dermatology


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