Q:

What is peeling skin syndrome?

A:

Quick Answer

Peeling skin syndrome is a rare, inherited skin disorder, according to the National Organization of Rare Disorders. The condition is often painless and causes the skin to peel continually. Some patients experience reddening of the skin, itching and blistering.

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Full Answer

People with peeling skin syndrome can manually remove sheets of skin, similar to skin that peels following a sun burn, explains the National Organization of Rare Disorders. Patients with this condition often have short stature and can easily pluck out newly formed hairs from the body. The syndrome is often a lifelong condition with peeling affecting the outermost layers of the skin.

Inherited genetic mutations from both the mother or father cause peeling skin syndrome, according to the National Organization of Rare Disorders. Individuals inherit the condition through the autosomal recessive trait. Peeling skin syndrome affects males and females equally. Classified as a non-inflammatory condition, reviews of medical literature indicate this rare disorder has only affected approximately 100 people as of 2015.

Treatment for peeling skin syndrome focuses on softening the skin with emollient ointments or petroleum jelly, according to the National Organization of Rare Disorders. Patients should avoid using retinoids or corticosteroids, which are ineffective and can cause adverse reactions.

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