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  • Nephrogenic fibrosing dermopathy after liver transplantation successfully treated with plasmapheresis AMERICAN JOURNAL OF DERMATOPATHOLOGY Baron, P. W., Cantos, K., Hillebrand, D. J., Hu, K. Q., Ojogho, O. N., Nehlsen-Cannarella, S., Concepcion, W. 2003; 25 (3): 204-209


    Nephrogenic fibrosing dermopathy (NFD) is a recently described cutaneous fibrosing disorder associated with renal dysfunction. It appears similar to scleromyxedema but with some notable exceptions, including the lack of involvement of the face and absence of plasma cells on histology, systemic involvement, and paraproteinemia. Patients can present with thickened or edematous skin with indurated papules and plaques involving the extremities and the trunk. We report the first three cases of NFD after liver transplantation successfully treated with plasmapheresis. Two patients underwent liver transplantation for hepatitis C virus-induced cirrhosis and one for hepatitis B virus-induced cirrhosis. All the patients had encephalopathy, refractory ascites, and malnutrition prior to transplantation. Like those patients with NFD, all three of our patients had renal dysfunction and required hemodialysis before and after transplantation. Two were not dependent on dialysis at the time of diagnosis, however. These patients had excellent liver allograft function, but the other patient had allograft failure secondary to recurrent hepatitis C. Immunosuppression therapy consisted of basiliximab, mycophenolate mofetil, calcineurin inhibitor, and prednisone. The patients developed "woody" skin induration of the distal extremities, erythematous papules, and contractures at 1, 2, and 120 months after transplantation. Skin biopsies resembled NFD. No paraproteinemia was evident. One to three 5-day courses of plasmapheresis resulted in moderate to marked clinical improvement. The improvement of the kidney function in two of our patients did not appear to correlate with that of the skin disorder, because the kidney function was improving at the time the diagnosis of NFD was made. In conclusion, we report the first three cases of NFD after liver transplantation. Plasmapheresis was moderately successful in resolving the skin-indurated papules, severe skin induration, and associated joint contractures. Preliminary studies (unpublished data) show that decreasing plasma levels of transforming growth factor-beta1 after plasmapheresis appear to correlate with the amelioration of this clinical condition.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000183494200004

    View details for PubMedID 12775982

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