Cutaneous sarcoidosis: A retrospective case series and a hospital-based case-control study in Taiwan

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Sarcoidosis is a systemic granulomatous disorder of unknown etiology often involving skin. Studies on cutaneous sarcoidosis and comorbidities are limited. This study is aimed to describe the clinical features of cutaneous sarcoidosis diagnosed in our hospital and to determine the relationships between cutaneous sarcoidosis and comorbidities.

This retrospective study evaluates patients with cutaneous sarcoidosis in a tertiary center in Taiwan from 1996 to 2015. The records of 38 patients with cutaneous sarcoidosis were reviewed for clinical characteristics and evaluated by analysis of variance. A 1:4 case-control analysis was conducted with 152 age- and sex-matched controls who underwent biopsy for other benign skin tumors.

The male to female ratio was 1:4.4. The average age at diagnosis was 51.7 years. Female patients were on average 13.9 years older than male patients. The correlation of age with gender was statistically significant (P = .037). The most common cutaneous lesions were plaques (47.4%) and confined to the face (71.1%). Of the 38 patients, 26.3% had diabetes mellitus. Age over 40 (P = .014) and female (P = .014) were associated with facial involvement. In the case-control study, a higher percentage of patients with cutaneous sarcoidosis than of control subjects had diabetes mellitus (P = .001), hearing loss (P = .031) and eye diseases (P = .047).

The present study demonstrates a striking female predominance and high proportions of facial involvement. Diabetes mellitus, hearing loss, and eye diseases may be associated with Taiwanese patients with cutaneous sarcoidosis.

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