Skin induration is formtion of a homogenized thickened bundle of skin tissues due to edema, inflammation, neoplastic infiltration or any other acute skin disease. It is a rare disease characterized by a stiff, dense feeling by assessing with palpation (feeling by touch of hand or fingers). Indurated skin problem starts from the neck or face and spreads towards the shoulders, arms, chest, back and buttocks.
Induration Meaning in Medical Terms
Indurated skin in medical terms is represented as:
“Localized hardening in soft tissues of the body due to more fibrous elements in tissues and is linked to inflammation and loss of pliability or elasticity.”
Symptoms of Skin Induration
Commonly indurated skin shows the following signs:
- Hardened skin area or inflamed cyst
- Shiny smooth appearance with swollen skin tissues
- More profuse growth on the hands, neck, and face is less commonly found in the back, chest, abdomen, or buttocks.
What causes indurated Skin?
Skin induration causes vary from patient to patient and depend upon the age, severity, and type of infection. However, the most important causes are:
Body inflammation results due to irregular accumulation of some white blood cells such as eosinophils beneath the skin called Eosinophilic fasciitis. Consequently, skin starts swelling and hardening, named indurated swelling.
The severity of body inflammation and skin induration varies from patient to patient; however, the exact cause of eosinophilic fasciitis is still unknown.
Different types of skin infections
Multiple skin infections due to different causative agents may result in skin induration. The most common skin infections include:
- An insect bite that is somewhat more infectious
- An abscess in the form of sores or blisters
- An inflamed cyst or nodule
“Baylor University Medical Center Study mentions that skin induration is not only due to underlying skin conditions instead a microorganism Staphylococcus aureus is responsible for wide forms of skin and soft tissue infections.”
This microorganism lives on the skin and nasal passages and enters the body through an infection or cut in the outer skin surface (epidermis).
Scleroderma is a Greek term comprising two words, ‘skleros’ meaning hard or indurated and ‘derma’ meaning skin. It is an autoimmune and connective tissue disorder characterized by inflammation and thickening. It is also associated with tissue fibrosis of internal organs.
The disease is rare, yet it has a high morbidity and fatality rate. Scleroderma has 3 stages, and indurated skin is the second one.
Panniculitis is a broad term describing inflammation in the deep fat layers of the skin due to:
- An infection
- Inflammatory Diseases such as lipodermatosclerosis affects more to patients with venous insufficiency.
- Connective Tissue or Pancreatic Disorder
- Certain Environmental factors
The main symptoms of panniculitis may include indurated skin (reddened and tender nodules) over the chest, abdomen, face and buttocks.
Cutaneous metastatic cancers
Cutaneous metastasis refers to the spread of cancer cells towards skin that originates primarily from internal cancer of any other body part, such as breast or lung cancer. However, skin cancer may be a direct cause of cutaneous metastatic cancers.
Who is at More Risk for Developing Induration?
Some possible health conditions pose serious risks for developing skin induration or it’s recurring attacks. These are:
- Chemotherapy and cancer
- Skin lesions
- Chronic Kidney Disease or kidney failure
- Severe burns
- Intravenous drug use
How to Get Rid or Treat Induration?
Treatment of indurated skin is almost not possible without the involvement of your health care advisor. Getting rid of skin induration depends on the patient’s age, disease severity, and underlying causative agents
Some of the possible treatment options for induration patients include:
- Incision and drainage
- Analgesic treatment
- Immunosuppressants and steroid medication
Many skin induration disorders necessitate regular monitoring, especially if symptoms increase and common treatment such as antibiotics proves ineffective. Certain types of medications are usually resistant to skin infections; therefore, fever and reddness develop if induration grows unlimited. So, it is critical to seek medical attention as soon as possible.