Conflicts of interest: None.
Endogenous ochronosis: case report and a systematic review of the literature
Version of Record online: 23 FEB 2011
© 2011 The International Society of Dermatology
International Journal of Dermatology
Volume 50, Issue 3, pages 262–267, March 2011
How to Cite
Khaled, A., Kerkeni, N., Hawilo, A., Fazaa, B. and Kamoun, M. R. (2011), Endogenous ochronosis: case report and a systematic review of the literature. International Journal of Dermatology, 50: 262–267. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-4632.2010.04668.x
- Issue online: 23 FEB 2011
- Version of Record online: 23 FEB 2011
Background Endogenous ochronosis (EO) is a rare autosomal recessive disorder due to accumulation of oxidized and polymerized forms of homogentisic acid (HGA) in connective tissues, giving them a deep dark blue pigmentation.
Aim Through a new Tunisian case of EO and a review of the literature, we aimed to define the epidemioclinical features of EO, its diagnostic criteria, and evolution.
Methods Three hundred and forty patients were enrolled through 54 articles and four abstracts.
Case report A 35-year-old woman, born in consanguineous parents, presented with blue-grey patches of fingernails, first interdigital spaces, and ears with brown conjunctival pigmentation. Urine specimen turned dark on standing overnight. The diagnosis of EO was confirmed by urinary high levels of HGA. Investigations revealed radiologic signs of ochronotic arthropathy.
Review of the literature EO is ubiquitary. Its prevalence was estimated at almost 6.5 cases/year. The mean age at diagnosis was 55.9 years (M/F: 1.85). Onset symptoms mainly consisted in cutaneous signs. Ochronotic arthropathy was the most frequently reported manifestation. Treatment was mainly symptomatic.
Discussion EO is often revealed in adulthood mainly after the fourth decade. Urinary darkening is the first sign of the disease but is rarely reported as an onset sign. Skin signs are the alerting features. Ochronotic arthropathy is insidious but may be debilitating. No specific medical treatment of EO is available.
Conclusion Cutaneous manifestations are the hallmarks of OE. As vital organ involvement has been reported, close monitoring and continuous surveillance is warranted.