Author: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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The term "plaque" (French = plate) describes a polyätiological (exogenously or endogenously induced, inflammatory or neoplastic), in diameter > 1.0 cm, sharply or also blurredly defined, normo- or hyperthermal, "plate-like" substance proliferation of the skin or the mucous membrane of different colour, consistency and configuration, rising slightly or also clearly above the skin level. A plaque (w) can be formed by appositional growth or by the fusion of individual papules.

General information
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  • Plaques are usually designated with an additional adjective for an exact clinical description, e.g. psoriatic plaque or eczematous plaque, mycoside plaque (for mycosis fungoides). They generally develop from papules, so that in the differential diagnostic evaluation all those papular diseases are considered which tend to confluence.
  • In principle, the same criteria apply for clinical evaluation as for a papule. S.a. lump.
    • Consistency (soft, firm, rough)
    • Surface (smooth, rough, scaly)
    • Distribution (isolated, grouped, confluent)
    • Arrangement patterns (gyriated, anular, serpiginous, in Blaschko lines, segmental, random)
    • structural, functional and topographic classification (contact points, textile covered, light exposed, random, field skin, inguinal skin, seborrhoeic zones, intertriginous)
    • Staining (skin-coloured, yellow, red to blue-red) and symptoms (mild itching, severe itching, pain).

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  1. Altmeyer P (2007) Dermatological differential diagnosis. The way to clinical diagnosis. Springer Medicine Publishing House, Heidelberg
  2. Nast A, Griffiths CE, Hay R, Sterry W, Bolognia JL. The 2016 International League of Dermatological Societies' revised glossary for the description of cutaneous lesions. Br J Dermatol. 174:1351-1358.

  3. Ochsendorf F et al (2017) Examination procedure and theory of efflorescence.Dermatologist 68: 229-242

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Node; Papel;


Last updated on: 29.10.2020