Livedoid vasculopathy – current aspects of diagnosis and treatment of cutaneous infarction


  • Conflict of interest None.

Correspondence to

Priv.-Doz. Dr. Tobias Goerge

Department of Dermatology, University Hospital Münster

Von-Esmarch-Straße 58

48149 Münster, Germany



Livedoid vasculopathy is a rare, chronic, recurrent disease of the cutaneous microcirculation. Its typical clinical manifestation is a triad which consists of livedo racemosa of the skin, episodic painful ulcerations of the distal aspects of the legs and a healing process leaving small porcelain-white scars called atrophie blanche. As an important result of recent research, livedoid vasculopathy has been defined as a coagulation disorder classified as a vasculopathy different from inflammatory vasculitis. This differentiation adds to the current pathophysiologic understanding and supports the therapeutic rationale with respect to the use of new systemic anticoagulants. The prevention of irreversible residual scarring and the improvement of patientsí quality of life are the main goals in treating cutaneous infarction and require early and consequent treatment. This article presents current knowledge on diagnosing this rare disease and offers practical guidance on its therapy.