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An acute or chronic disease of the skin characterized by the appearance of bullae, which develop in crops or in continuous succession.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a chronic disease characterized by a crop of blisters, or bullae, having a flaccid covering and serous-hemorrhagic contents; the blisters form on the apparently intact skin or mucosa of the oral cavity, larynx, eyes, and genitals. The blisters rapidly enlarge and multiply, bursting to form extensive ulcerated surfaces. The patient’s general condition is disturbed; there is general weakness and elevation of body temperature. Infection of the mouth and larynx makes food intake difficult.

The causes of pemphigus have not been conclusively determined. The disease usually afflicts middle-aged and elderly persons. The mechanism of formation of pemphigus vulgaris is acantholysis, a type of degenerative change in epidermal cells. It involves the dissolution of the intercellular bridges, degenerative change of the nuclei, and loss of part of the cell protoplasm. As a result, communication between the layers of epidermis is disrupted. In other forms of pemphigus, the blisters form as a result of an inflammatory process.

Pemphigus vulgaris progresses gradually, and cachexia develops. The prognosis for persons suffering from other forms of pemphigus is relatively favorable. Treatment includes the ingestion of hormonal preparations, antimicrobial agents, or analgesics. Disinfecting solutions may be applied externally.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The primary endpoint was the percentage of participants who achieved sustained complete remission off corticosteroid therapy (no disease activity, as evaluated by Pemphigus Disease Area Index, without the use of steroids for 16 consecutive weeks or more) at Week 52.
The BELIEVE study comprised 27 patients with mild to severe pemphigus of an average 6 years' duration.
Pemphigus vulgaris (PV) is the most common pemphigus disorder.
This has further reduced the mortality rate to 5-10%.1,3 Dexamethasone-cyclophosphamide pulse (DCP) therapy was introduced by Pasricha et al.6 in 1981 which has revolutionized the treatment of pemphigus. Later it underwent several modifications.
Immune mediated disease as oral lichen planus, pemphigus vulgaris, benign mucosal pemphigoid, or Sjogren Syndrome are commonly present in females close to their menopause.
There are two more common clinical types of pemphigus, vulgaris, and foliaceus (2).
The term pemphigus describes a group of chronic bullous mucocutaneous diseases with autoantibodies against various desmosomal components that result in cell-cell detachment (acantholysis) and consequently in intra-epithelial blister formation (18, 19).
Pemphigus foliaceus is the most common autoimmune skin disease in small animals (Scott et al., 2001) characterized by production of auto antibodies against a component of adhesion molecules on keratinocytes.
Pemphigus vegetans (Pveg) is a rare variant of deep acantholytic pemphigus which is mostly found in middle-age women patients.