Dermatopathology in Endocrine Disease

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Through multiple complex mechanisms, the endocrine system plays a vital regulatory role in virtually every organ system including the skin. Cutaneous lesions may be seen incidentally in patients with endocrine disorders. Alternatively, certain skin conditions are seen exclusively in the setting of endocrine disorders and may rarely be the first clinical symptom of the underlying endocrinopathy. Although clinical examination is often sufficient, a tissue biopsy may still be needed to arrive at or confirm the diagnosis and to direct therapy. In many cases, the cutaneous condition might improve or resolve completely after treatment of the underlying endocrine disorder. In this review, we summarize the most common skin conditions associated with endocrine disorders, uncovering their relationship to the underlying endocrinopathy, demonstrating their clinicopathologic presentation, and highlighting their typical modalities of treatment.