Atrophoderma of Pasini and Pierini a variant of morphea?

Vasile Sturza1, Anca E. Chiriac2, Iulia Emet1, Vladislav Gogu1, Mircea Betiu1

1”Nicolae Testemitanu” State University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Dermatology Hospital SDMC, Dermatology Department, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova, 2University of Medicine and Pharmacy “Grigore T. Popa”, Faculty of Medicine, PhD Student, Iasi, Romania

Corresponding author: Anca E. Chiriac MD

Submission: 16.05.2020; Acceptance: 09.08.2020

DOI: 10.7241/ourd.2020e.104

Cite this article: Sturza V, Chiriac AE, Emet I, Gogu V, Betiu M. Atrophoderma of Pasini and Pierini a variant of morphea? Our Dermatol Online. 2020;11(e):e104.1-104.2.

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Pasini described the skin disease in 1923 [1], and, a few years later, in 1936 Pierini and Vivoli reported the same disorder [2]; for many years it has been known as atrophoderma of Pasini and Pierini (APP). In 1958 the name APP was replaced by other terms, such as atrophic scleroderma d’emblee and dyschromic and atrophic variation of scleroderma [3], suggesting that APP could be a variant of scleroderma. In 1995 a new classification of scleroderma has been published and APP was considered a form of localized plaque morphea [4,5]. Furthermore, Buechner and Rufli simply stated that APP should be considered as an “abortive, primarily atrophic variant of morphea” [6] and, in the view of Amano et al, APP and morphea should be regarded as “similar nosologic entity” [7].

Figure: 1 Atrophic lesions like “footprints in the snow”.                                            
Figure: 2 Ivory, indurated plaque with lilac ring.

During all these years pro and cons have been published concerning the relation between APP and morphea.


1. Pasini A. Atrofodermia idioatica progressiva. G Ital Dermatol. 1923;58:785.

2. Pierini L, Vivoli D. Atrofodermia progressiva (Pasini) G Ital Dermatol. 1936;77:403–9.

3. Canizares O, Sachs PM, Jaimovich L, Torres VM. Idiopathic atrophoderma of Pasini and Pierini. AMA Arch Derm. 1958;77:42-58.

4. Peterson LS, Nelson AM, Su WP. Classification of morphea (localized scleroderma). Mayo Clinic Proc. 1995;70:1068-76.

5. Bachaspatimayum R, Bhattacharjee N, Das P. Atrophoderma of Pasini and Pierini:An unusual presentation. Our Dermatol Online. 2019;10:355-7.

6. Buechner SA, Rufli T. Atrophoderma of Pasini and Pierini. Clinical and histopathologic findings and antibodies to Borrelia burgdorferi in thirty-four patients. J Am Acad Dermatol. 1994;30:441-6.

7. Amano H, Nagai Y, Ishikawa O. Multiple morphea coexistent with atrophoderma of Pasini-Pierini (APP):APP could be abortive morphea. J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2007;21:1254-6.

8. Fett N, Erth VP. Update on morphea:part I. Epidemiology, clinical presentation and pathogenesis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2011;64:217–29.

9. Litaiem N, Idoudi S. Atrophoderma of Pasini and Pierini. In:StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL):StatPearls Publishing;2020.


Source of Support: Nil.

Conflict of Interest: None declared.

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