Cases reported "Pruritus"

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1/5. Active "itch fibers" in chronic pruritus.

    An itch-specific neuronal pathway was recently discovered in healthy humans and animals. Here the authors report that activity in this specific pathway coincides with itch under pathophysiologic conditions in a patient with chronic pruritus. Microneurographic recordings from the symptomatic area revealed spontaneous activity in six single C-fiber afferents that had the characteristic features of "itch fibers." Itch may be caused by activity in a specific subpopulation of C-fiber afferents.
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2/5. Liver function test abnormalities and pruritus in a patient treated with atorvastatin: case report and review of the literature.

    The 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme a reductase inhibitors (also known as statins) are associated with elevated transaminase levels in 1-3% of patients. Therapy with these drugs requires monitoring of alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels because animal studies and premarketing clinical trials showed signs of hepatotoxicity that were primarily minor elevations of ALT. Nevertheless, postmarketing experience suggests that hepatotoxicity is rare, and that elevated ALT levels are reversible with continued therapy and probably are related to cholesterol lowering. Based on the low occurrence of ALT elevations and the lack of clinical evidence of hepatotoxicity, some clinicians are calling for a change in the current practice of monitoring liver function tests. We report, however, the case of a 71-year-old woman who was receiving atorvastatin and experienced elevated transaminase levels on two occasions, and developed pruritus on rechallenge with the drug. Thus, clinicians should be aware of asymptomatic elevations in liver function tests in patients receiving atorvastatin who do not have known risk factors for liver damage.
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3/5. Central neuropathic itch from spinal-cord cavernous hemangioma: a human case, a possible animal model, and hypotheses about pathogenesis.

    Cavernous hemangiomas (cavernomas) of the spinal cord are rare congenital malformations that comprise less than 5% of all intramedullary lesions. Despite this rarity, we describe the third case of central neuropathic itch associated with intramedullary cavernoma. Since fewer than 10 cases of central spinal itch from all causes have been published, this concurrence suggests the possibility of a specific association. A middle-aged man developed chronic disabling neuropathic itch and pain affecting his left shoulder and arm after frank hemorrhage of a midcervical cavernoma. We hypothesize that the relatively rostro-dorsal location of his lesion increased its likelihood of causing itch as well as pain. The microscopic pathology of cavernomas, specifically their gliotic rim containing hemosiderin-laden phagocytes, fosters ectopic firing of nearby neurons and makes cranial cavernomas highly epileptogenic. We hypothesize that these pathological features predispose cavernomas to cause central itch if they are located near, but spare, the central itch projection neurons in lamina I of the dorsal horn. Quisqualate injections into the deeper layers (neck) of the dorsal horns of rats produce pathologically similar lesions. Such rats develop unilateral dermatomal hyperalgesia and self-injurious scratching and biting (autotomy). Although this pathological grooming is currently interpreted as a response to chronic pain, we propose that it more likely models scratching provoked by central neuropathic itch, as seen in our patient and others. Study of quisqualate-injected rats may provide leads towards new treatments for neuropathic itch.
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keywords = animal
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4/5. Pseudo-delusory syndrome caused by Limothrips cerealium.

    BACKGROUND: Limothrips cerealium (or "grain thrips") is an insect of the phylum Arthropoda, known as parasite of plants of the family Gramineae; human infestation is not frequently described in literature. MATERIALS AND methods: We report the case of a 59-year-old female farmer, come to observation because of intense itching and sensation of "walking insects" on her head, with no objective cutaneous signs except lesions due to scratching. After repeated visits, in which negative results of clinical and laboratory tests suggested the diagnosis of "delusory syndrome" (Ekbom's syndrome), we finally isolated on her head some insects, identified by stereomicroscopy as L. cerealium. Careful inspection of the house of our patient allowed us to identify, as possible source of parasites, a wheat field and a deposit of grains used for animal feeding. Temporarily removing the patient from her usual environment resulted in complete clinical resolution. RESULTS: Peculiarity of symptoms caused by this parasite and consequent problems for a correct diagnosis are discussed, as well as possible solutions.
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5/5. Cheyletiella dermatitis. A mite infestation of rabbit, cat, dog, and man.

    Two patients with recurrent, intensely pruritic, grouped red papules on the chest, abdomen, and thighs were examined and found to have Cheyletiella dermatitis. Cheyletiella, a nonburrowing species of mite, was isolated from fur brushings of the household pets, including one dog and two cats. Treatment of the affected pets resulted in complete resolution of symptoms and signs in both animals and patients. This appears to be the third instance of human Cheyletiella dermatitis recorded in north america.
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