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Winter 2004, Vol. 12 No. 4

H.K. Dermatol. Venereol. Bull. (2004) 12, 186-192


Original Article

Granuloma annulare: review of 31 cases in Social Hygiene Service

PT Chan 陳寶德 and TS Au 區德成

Abstract
A retrospective study on 31 cases of granuloma annulare (GA) had been carried out in the Social Hygiene Service. Male to female ratio was 1.82:1. Age of onset was distributed bimodally in both sexes, with median age of onset of 45 years in male and 61 years in female. 38.7% had onset of disease in the first three decades of life. Localised, generalised, perforating and subcutaneous GA accounted for 67.8%, 25.8%, 3.2% and 3.2% respectively. They were mostly found on distal extremities (excluding palms and soles). Symptoms were absent (77.4%) and no precipitating factors could be identified (90.3%) in most cases. Over 80% of GA cases were followed up for more than two years. Three cases of localised GA cleared without treatment within one month after skin biopsy. Topical steroid was the most common treatment employed in this study. Systemic isotretinoin cleared a generalised GA case but dapsone failed in another subcutaneous GA case. A total of 21 out of 31 GA cases (67.7%) achieved complete remission from one to 132 months. The present study demonstrates essentially similar clinical features of GA in the local population as compared with western literature. A tendency of less female cases in local Chinese remains to be proven by a larger series.