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Onychophagia-Induced Longitudinal Melanonychia

Authors

  • Rachel B. Anolik B.S.,

    1. Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
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  • Kara Shah M.D., Ph.D.,

    1. Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    2. Department of Pediatrics, Division of Dermatology, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
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  • Adam I. Rubin M.D.

    1. Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    2. Department of Pediatrics, Division of Dermatology, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
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Address correspondence to Adam I. Rubin, M.D., Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Department of Dermatology, 3600 Spruce Street, 2nd Floor Maloney Building, Philadelphia, PA 19104, or e-mail: Adam.Rubin@uphs.upenn.edu

Abstract

Abstract:  An otherwise-healthy 13-year-old girl with previously normal nails developed longitudinal pigmented bands on multiple fingernails. Physical examination revealed faintly pigmented bands on multiple fingernails and on the left fifth toenail. We believed that the cause of the pigmented bands was onychophagia-induced longitudinal melanonychia, a rare phenomenon, which emphasizes the need for dermatologists to question patients with melanonychia about their nail biting habits because they may not be forthcoming with this information.

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