Cutaneous manifestations in an autistic population

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Background: The observation of combinations of cutaneous signs that appear to be specific to autistic patients indicates a possible genetic association between autism and certain cutaneous manifestations. Objective: To examine the possibility of a genetic association between autism and cutaneous manifestations in an autistic population compared to a control group of psychiatric patients. Subjects and methods: Seventy-four autistic and 67 psychiatric hospitalized patients underwent routine skin examination by a physician who was unaware of the patient individual diagnosis, medical history and family background. Data on concomitant diseases, family medical history, drug therapy and dermatologic findings were compared in the two populations. Results: The autistic population had a significantly higher frequency of seborrhea, atypical nevi, pigmentation, baldness and seizures, which may have a genetic background. Conclusions: The findings point to the possible genetic nature of autism, a speculation that requires further study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)118-122
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1997


  • Autism
  • Drug therapy
  • Psychiatric population
  • Skin disease


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