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Many common diseases such as atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, drug rashes, urticaria, viral exanthems, bug bites, and vitiligo present with lesions in multiple body regions. Less common disorders such as syphilis, erythema multiforme, Stevens–Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis (SJS/TEN), immunobullous diseases, cutaneous T-cell lymphomas, and connective tissue disorders also present in multiple body locations. The presence or absence of mucosal involvement can be a helpful clue.


Skin diseases involving multiple body sites can be broadly placed into the following categories starting with the most common (Table 42-1):

  • Inflammatory Dermatoses

  • Infectious Diseases

  • Infestations and bites

  • Drug rashes and urticaria

  • Connective tissue diseases

  • Autoimmune bullous diseases

  • Pigment disorders

  • Neoplastic

Table 42-1.Differential diagnosis of skin diseases involving multiple body regions.

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