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Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia

Print version ISSN 0365-0596On-line version ISSN 1806-4841


ARAUJO, Leila Maria Batista et al. Acanthosis nigricans in obese women in a mixed-race population: a marker of metabolic disturbances. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2002, vol.77, n.5, pp.537-543. ISSN 0365-0596.

BACKGROUND: Acanthosis nigricans (AN) has been associated with various metabolic and endocrine disturbances. OBJECTIVE: TThe objective of this study is to evaluate the frequency of metabolic syndrome clusters in a group of obese mixed-race women with AN as compared to a group without AN. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: 481 women consecutively admitted to an outpatient obesity clinic were studied: 388 with AN, and 93 without AN. Except for 20 diabetic patients, all patients were submitted to an oral glucose tolerance test (75 g). RESULTS: The skin color distribution was 34.5% white, 38.9% mulatto and 26.6% black. The global frequency of AN was 80.7%. AN frequency was significantly higher in black versus white and black versus mulatto (90.6 % and 66.9%, p = 0.000006). It was also higher in mulatto versus white (86% and 66.9%, p<0,02). The AN group was younger (35 + 10 years versus 38 + 10 years, p < 0,01) and heavier (41 + 6 kg/m2 versus 39 + 6 kg/m2, p<0.01). It consisted of larger waist circumference and higher frequency android obesity, with type 2 diabetes (11% versus 4.3%, p=0.05), higher fasting insulin levels and insulin resistance (HOMA IR) than the group without AN. The frequencies of diastolic hypertension and disturbances of total cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the group with AN were similar to the group without AN. CONCLUSION: Among obese women from a multi-race population, a higher frequency of AN was observed in black and mulatto women. A higher number of metabolic syndrome clusters was observed in the group with AN than in the group without AN. Thus, obese patients with AN should be targeted for screening metabolic disturbances, even at a young age.

Keywords : Acanthosis nigricans; diabetes mellitus non-insulin-dependent; metabolism; obesity; racial stocks; insulin resistance.

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