Filip-Ciubotaru Florina-Mihaela MD, PhD
University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Grigore T. Popa”, Iaşi
Reading skin signs
Authors: Florina Filip-Ciubotaru, Gabriela Stoleriu, Daciana Brănișteanu, Carmen Manciuc, Liliana Foia, Ana-Maria Holicov
The skin remains a territory for numerous diseases affecting exclusively the skin, but also for the manifestations of diseases distant to the skin; in this regard, rigorous physical examination and history taking will always play a key role in pointing to the clinical diagnosis. For example, skin rash, a transient condition unaccompanied by other signs and symptoms can be overlooked or considered harmless. Skin rash associated with fever and other signs and symptoms or which becomes permanent requires special diagnostic attention, such as in the case of viral infections (hepatitis C virus infection, HIV/AIDS). Sometimes, it accompanies the treatment with calcium channel blockers, especially the dihydropiridinic ones, used as antihypertensive drugs, but which are also potent vasodilators even at skin level. Pruritus may be caused by a local skin reaction, or it may be due to internal, more subtle illnesses, often without suggestive cutaneous manifestations other than scratch marks; some other times, it may be more than a condition that generates pruritus. Becoming familiar with this language always buys time in having a correct clinical diagnosis. Key words: skin diseases, physical diagnosis.