A study of cutaneous manifestations associated with diabetes mellitus


  • Manish N. Kadam Department of Skin & VD, Indian Institute of Medical Science & Research Medical College, Badnapur, Jalna, Maharashtra, India
  • Pravin N. Soni Department of General Medicine, Indian Institute of Medical Science & Research Medical College, Badnapur, Jalna, Maharashtra, India
  • Sangita Phatale Department of Physiology, MGM Medical College, Aurangabad, Maharashtra, India
  • B. Siddramappa Department of Skin & VD, KLE’s Medical College, Belgaum, Karnataka, India




Cutaneous manifestations, Diabetes mellitus, Skin manifestations


Background: Diabetes mellitus is a fairly common medical disorder that involves almost every specialty in its spectrum of clinical manifestation, and up to 1/3rd of patients with diabetes mellitus are estimated to have cutaneous changes. In other words using broadest criteria all subjects with diabetes will diabetes will develop cutaneous manifestations of this disease.

Methods: A total of 100 diabetic patients with cutaneous manifestations, who attended skin OPD at Civil Hospital, Belgaum, Karnataka, India and K.L.E’S Hospital and Medical Research Centre, were randomly selected. The present study was conducted over a period of 22 months from March 1995 to December 1996. Total 100 cases were included in this study. The male to female ratio is 1.6:1 approximately. Detailed history, physical examination, cutaneous and mucous membrane involvement examination was done. Diabetes Mellitus was confirmed by urine sugar and blood sugar estimation. The diagnosis of diabetes mellitus was done on the basis of criteria laid down by national diabetic data group. Urine and blood sugar estimation was done in all the cases.

Results: Fungal infections were common cutaneous manifestation followed by bacterial infections and generalized pruritus. Those patients who were on oral hypoglycaemic drugs, insulin therapy found to have photodermatitis and localized lipoatrophy. The common associated skin diseases with diabetes mellitus were fungal infection (38%) and viral infections (2%). Unexplained generalized pruritus was observed in (17%) cases, followed by pruritus ani is (3%) and prurigo simplex in (1%). Cutaneous markers of diabetes i.e acrochordons were observed in 17% cases. The other manifestations observed were lichen planus (6%), PLE (3%), psoriasis (3%), vitiligo (2%), Kyrles disease (2%), infected eczema (2%), scabies (2%), lichen simplex chronicus (2%) and pemphigus vulgaris (1%).

Conclusions: The physicians should be aware of cutaneous manifestations in diabetes mellitus. Where the ignorance of skin manifestations in diabetes or improper treatment may makes the condition worse. The early detection and early treatment of common skin manifestations in diabetes will prevent further complications or ineffectiveness due to treatment especially in cases of carbuncle, extensive tinea corporis, psoriasis, lichen planus, macro and micro angiopathies, trohic ulcers etc. A well-controlled diabetes by drugs, diet and exercise will allow the patient to lead a normal life like any other normal individuals.


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