Morphea is a skin disorder that occurs when the immune system of the body backfires on the body causing reddish colored and oval shaped patches on the skin. This is considered as one of the common forms of scleroderma. These ugly looking patches mainly develop on the stomach, face, abdomen, back, arms and legs. Morphea can be categorized as localized/circumscribed (In this one or multiple patches are developed on the body), generalized (in this the skin problem spreads rapidly on the wide surface of the body), linear (In this lesions develop on the outer skin along with the deeper skin layers), and pansclerotic (this type is not limited to the outer skin, but also involves the inner layers and also affect bones). This categorization is based on the lesions and the depth of the tissues that are involved in the lesions.

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Till date the actual cause of morphea is not known. It is a common belief that the problem occurs as a result of adverse response of immune system on the body and at times it can triggered because of radiation therapy or repeated occurrence of infection. As such the problem gets cured on its own within a span of three to five years, but it leaves darkness and scares behind. Treatment helps in getting rid of the problem at the earliest and also it limits the amount of scares. The medication involves corticosteroids, Vitamin D ointment or in some severe case phototherapy.

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Is Morphea A Hereditary Disease?

Is Morphea A Hereditary Disease?

Doctors believe that there are a number of factors that affect the occurrence of morphea are vascular dysfunction, auto immunity, environmental exposure and genetics. This skin disorder is hereditary i.e. it pass from one generation to another. Hence, person having a family history of morphea should be careful and visit doctor immediately if they find any unevenness in their skin. (1)

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Generalized Morphea

Generalized morphea is rarely encountered but it is more severe in nature. The distinguishing factor includes 4 or bigger size patches on legs, trunk and arms. Usually, face and hands are infected with this problem. Look wise patches can be dark, silvery or hyperpigmented. This type of morphea is not fatal but it leaves several scares on the body.

Localized Morphea

Symptoms of localized morphea are limited to only the skin and its related tissues. In some rare cases, the muscles present below the affected area become hard. In this type of morphea does not affect the internal organs, this is the reason why it is not a life threatening problem and it is less dangerous compared to other forms of morphea. The symptoms of this morphea are painful but it goes away with time.

Risk Factors For Morphea

In the past few years it has been observed that females are more prone to develop this skin problem as compared to men. Secondly, this disease can affect people of different age groups, but children between two to fourteen years of age and adults who are in their forties are at a higher risk of developing morphea.

Life Style Changes For Morphea

People who are already suffering from morphea and are under medication should make some changes in their daily routine to improve their condition. Morphea leads to excessive dryness of skin, hence; one should apply moisturizers frequently to keep the skin moist. Secondly, they should avoid taking bath in hot water or taking shower for a long duration because both these activities lead to dryness.

Coping With Morphea

People suffering from this skin disease develop ugly looking dry patches on their body. These patches make an individual look different from others, hence; one need to accept and cope up with the condition. Accept the fact that you are suffering from this problem and make efforts to get rid of the problem to the earliest possible. Make regular visitors to the doctors and undergo suggested treatment for best results. This will make the disease less painful and the results will be visible soon.

References:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4323700/

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Sheetal DeCaria MD

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

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Last Modified On: April 19, 2019

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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