Comparison of photodermatoses in African-Americans and Caucasians: a follow-up study.

Mio Nakamura
Mio Nakamura
Shinshu University Hospital
Marsha Henderson
Marsha Henderson
Multicultural Dermatology Center
Gordon Jacobsen
Gordon Jacobsen
Henry Ford Hospital
United States
Henry W Lim
Henry W Lim
Henry Ford Hospital

Photodermatol Photoimmunol Photomed 2014 Oct 30;30(5):231-6. Epub 2013 Oct 30.

Wayne State University, School of Medicine, Detroit, MI, USA.

Background/purpose: Only a few studies have compared frequencies of photodermatoses among different races and skin types. This is an extension of a study performed by Kerr and Lim and evaluates the frequency of photodermatoses in African-Americans compared with Caucasians in the same institution during an 8-year period.

Methods: Retrospective chart review was performed, including dermatology clinic charts from October 2004 to August 2012 with International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision diagnostic codes related to photodermatoses.

Results: We identified 229 patients with photodermatoses. Of these, 138 (46.6%) were African-American and 63 (42.2%) were Caucasian. Statistically significant differences in the distribution of photodermatoses in African-Americans and Caucasians, respectively, were as follows: phototoxic drug eruption (0.7% and 15.9%, P < 0.0001), phytophotodermatitis (0% and 6.3%, P = 0.009), polymorphous light eruption (PMLE) (86.2% and 54%, P < 0.0001) and porphyrias (0% and 7.9%, P = 0.003).

Conclusion: Combined with data from Kerr and Lim, this is the largest study of photodermatoses in African-Americans to date. Congruent to former studies, photodermatoses do occur regularly in dark-skinned individuals. Overall, the frequency of photodermatoses in African-Americans and Caucasians are similar; however, PMLE occurs more commonly in African-Americans, and porphyias and phototoxicity occur more commonly in Caucasians.
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October 2014
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