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Am J Clin Dermatol. 2009;10(5):336-8. doi: 10.2165/11310800-000000000-00000.

An uncommon presentation of the co-existence of morphea and vitiligo in a patient with chronic hepatitis B virus infection: is there a possible association with autoimmunity?

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2nd Dermatology Clinic, Ankara Numune Education and Research Hospital, Sihhiye, Ankara, Turkey.


A 30-year-old man presented with indurated violaceous plaques all over his body that had been present for 7 months. The patient had also had vitiligo for 3.5 years, and hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and cirrhosis for a 2-year period. Histopathologic examination of the indurated plaques confirmed the diagnosis of morphea. Localized scleroderma and vitiligo have only rarely been reported to occur simultaneously. Although the etiologies of vitiligo and morphea are both uncertain, their association with autoimmune diseases favors an autoimmune hypothesis. Both vitiligo and morphea might have appeared coincidentally. However, this association could be significant because it may be related to the presence of HBV and alterations in the immune system that are caused by this virus. Therefore, this rare combination of vitiligo and morphea in a patient with chronic HBV infection warrants attention because it suggests a possible immunologic association, which may merit future study.

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