Poikiloderma of Civatte

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Images of Poikiloderma of Civatte

Overview

Poikiloderma of Civatte is a chronic, non-cancerous (benign) skin condition in fair-skinned adults, which is probably caused by long-term sun exposure. Poikiloderma of Civatte shows a specific pattern of color change in the skin due to sun damage to the neck and sometimes the center of the chest.

Who's at risk?

Poikiloderma of Civatte is a cosmetic problem typically affecting women more frequently than men.

This condition is more common with increased age.

Signs and Symptoms

Poikiloderma of Civatte usually affects the front and sides of the neck. The center of the chest is also sometimes affected. You will notice darkened skin color (hyperpigmentation) and lightened skin color (hypopigmentation) as well as redness (erythema). Fine blood vessels in the skin are often seen.

Self-Care Guidelines

Use sunscreens, wear sun-protective clothing, and avoid peak sun hours (between 10 AM and 3 PM) to help prevent this condition from occurring or worsening.

When to Seek Medical Care

Poikiloderma of Civatte is primarily a cosmetic condition that does not require treatment, but see your doctor if you become concerned about its appearance.

Treatments Your Physician May Prescribe

  • There are no oral or topical medications that can improve poikiloderma of Civatte, but your doctor will encourage you to use sun-protective measures as noted above to prevent it from getting worse.
  • Some types of laser therapy may improve the appearance of this condition.

Trusted Links

MedlinePlus: Skin Conditions
MedlinePlus: Sun Exposure

References

Bolognia, Jean L., ed. Dermatology, pp.1381. New York: Mosby, 2003.

Freedberg, Irwin M., ed. Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 6th ed. pp.2502. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2003.