What Causes Porokeratosis and How Is It Treated

What causes porokeratosis?

Porokeratosis is caused by a genetic mutation. The gene responsible for causing porokeratosis is called KITLG1. A person with this mutation cannot produce the enzyme (ketone body dehydrogenase) which converts fatty acids into energy efficiently. Therefore, they are unable to use their own fat stores effectively and must eat other people’s food to survive. They have no choice but to eat animal fats or carbohydrates. The result is that they develop severe malnutrition, often resulting in death.

The cause of porokeratosis can be traced back to the time when our ancestors lived in tropical climates where there was little sunlight and high levels of ultraviolet radiation from the sun. These conditions make it difficult for skin cells to produce vitamin D3, which helps maintain healthy skin and hair growth.

Vitamin D3 is essential for normal bone development and immune function. Without adequate amounts of vitamin D3, the skin becomes damaged and begins to look very pale. If not treated immediately, porokeratosis can lead to blindness.

How is porokeratosis diagnosed?

There are two ways in which porokeratosis can be diagnosed: 1) microscopic examination of the affected area; 2) blood test.

During a microscopic examination, the doctor takes a small sample of skin cells from the affected area and studies it under a microscope. He or she will look for signs of abnormal skin cells.

During a blood test, the medical practitioner will analyze the level of glucose in the patient’s blood serum. If it is low, it is likely that the patient is experiencing porokeratosis.

What are the types of porokeratosis?

There are three types of porokeratosis that result in a loss of skin pigmentation: 1) erythromelanosis follicularis et perstans; 2) porokeratosis set-like pathology; and 3) generalized Kyrle’s disease.

Erythromelanosis follicularis et perstans is a type of porokeratosis that affects the skin. The main symptom is red dots or small red bumps that occur on the backs of the arms, the shins, and, in some cases, the cheeks.

These bumps are often painful; however, this condition rarely affects fertility or causes discomfort when walking. In some instances, erythromelanosis follicularis et perstans can cause hyperpigmentation of the skin. The affected area turns red and remains that way for an extended period of time.

Porokeratosis set-like pathology is a rare type of porokeratosis that causes small white dots to form on the elbows, knees, and scalp. It can also appear under the arms, in the groin, and around the genitals.

This condition does not cause any other symptoms.

Generalized Kyrle’s disease is a rare type of porokeratosis that most commonly affects men between the ages of 40 and 60. It can cause bleeding in the corneas, which can result in temporary or permanent blindness if left untreated.

This condition also causes round patches of skin to detach from the body.

What are the risk factors of porokeratosis?

There are several risk factors of porokeratosis: 1) dry skin; 2) cold temperature; 3) lack of sunlight; 4) aging; 5) family history.

Since porokeratosis is caused by a loss of skin pigmentation, patients should take extra care to moisturize their skin on a regular basis. Moisturizing can prevent skin cells from becoming too dry and help protect against external irritants.

It should be noted that some dermatologists believe that porokeratosis is set off by an external irritant; if this is the case, the patient should try his or her best to avoid these irritants.

Because cold temperatures cause blood vessels to constrict, patients are advised to wear warm clothing when going out in the winter. Furthermore, if possible, patients should try to stay in warmer environments as much as they can.

Patients should also make sure to get enough sunlight on a regular basis. This is especially important for those with erythromelanosis follicularis et perstans, as studies have shown that ultraviolet light can help prevent the condition from becoming worse.

Porokeratosis often runs in families. If a patient has a family history of the condition, he or she should make an effort to seek out a doctor immediately upon noticing symptoms.

Sources & references used in this article:

Immunosuppression: a cause of porokeratosis? by JS Lederman, AJ Sober, GS Lederman – Journal of the American Academy …, 1985 – jaad.org

Treatment of porokeratosis: a systematic review by T Weidner, T Illing, D Miguel, P Elsner – American Journal of Clinical …, 2017 – Springer

Porokeratosis: immunosuppression and exposure to sunlight by PL Bencini, C Crosti, F Sala – British Journal of Dermatology, 1987 – Wiley Online Library

Verrucous porokeratosis of Mibelli on the buttocks mimicking psoriasis by JS Wallner, JE Fitzpatrick… – CUTIS-NEW …, 2003 – mdedge-files-live.s3.us-east-2 …

Topical cholesterol/lovastatin for the treatment of porokeratosis: A pathogenesis-directed therapy by L Atzmony, YH Lim, C Hamilton, JS Leventhal… – Journal of the American …, 2020 – Elsevier

Porokeratosis and immunosuppression by J KANITAKIS, S EUVRARD, M FAURE… – European Journal of …, 1998 – jle.com

Successful treatment of disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis with Q‐switched ruby laser by M Itoh, H Nakagawa – The Journal of Dermatology, 2007 – Wiley Online Library

Disseminated superficial porokeratosis in a patient with AIDS by J Kanitakis, L Misery, JF Nicolas… – British Journal of …, 1994 – Wiley Online Library