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Anais Brasileiros de Dermatologia

On-line version ISSN 1806-4841

Abstract

ALCHORNE, Mauricio Mota de Avelar  and  ABREU, Marilda Aparecida Milanez Morgado de. Dermatology in black skin. An. Bras. Dermatol. [online]. 2008, vol.83, n.1, pp. 7-20. ISSN 1806-4841.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0365-05962008000100002.

This study approaches dermatology in dark skinned individuals. First, it discusses the concepts of race and ethnicity, as well as the classification criteria of the Brazilian population, indicating areas where the dark skinned people are concentrated. Next, it makes one brief explanation on skin color classification systems and describes structural, biological and functional characteristics of the epidermis, dermis and cutaneous attachments that differentiate dark from fair skin. It also approaches some physiological alterations that usually are observed in the skin, nails and in the mucosa of dark skinned people. Also discussed are some patterns of reactions and alterations of lesion color, due to cutaneous hyperpigmentation, which lend unexpected aspects to the dermatosis, making its recognition difficult. Finally, the study highlights some diseases in particular, emphasizing inherent characteristics associated to lesion patterns and the frequency of some dermatoses in the black skin. The aim of this study was to bring data to help the dermatologist be familiar with the different nuances that lesions may present in a more pigmented skin.

Keywords : Continental population groups; Ethnic groups; Skin diseases; Skin pigmentation.

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