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Dermatol Clin. 1990 Jan;8(1):209-13.

Chloracne. Clinical manifestations and etiology.

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  • 1Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois.


Chloracne is a rare but important acneiform eruption often associated with the ingestion of chlorinated phenolic agents such as dioxins with subsequent toxicity from these chemicals. Clinically, chloracne can be distinguished from acne vulgaris by the distribution and appearance of the lesions and by taking a detailed history. In some instances, it may be associated with particularly xerotic skin, pigmentation, follicular hyperkeratosis, conjunctivitis, and actinic elastosis. Histologically, the primary lesion is a follicular plug containing keratinous material. Chloracne is difficult if not impossible to treat adequately and once present, may persist for years. Consequently, good hygiene, safe manufacturing processes so that no inhalation or skin contact is possible, and the elimination of atmospheric contamination are all necessary in the prevention of this potentially debilitating disease.

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