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Patient Information Leaflets (PILs)

These Patient Information Leaflets (PILs) are specially written by the British Association of Dermatologists (BAD).

The BAD has been awarded The Information Standard certification for the process it employs to develop information products aimed at the general public, which include PILs, Sun Awareness Campaign materials, and other information products.

The BAD shall hold responsibility for the accuracy of the information published, and neither the scheme operator nor the scheme owner shall have any responsibility for costs, losses, or direct or indirect damages or costs arising from inaccuracy of information or omissions in information published on the website on behalf of the BAD.

Please note:

  1. There are thousands of different skin complaints, therefore, the focus of the British Association of Dermatologists' PILs production is on the most common, rarest or debilitating skin conditions.
  2. The offer to provide details of source materials used to inform the British Association of Dermatologists' PILs is for instances where the advice provided in the PILs does not reflect local practice and therefore evidence supporting said advice needs to be produced. It is not an offer to conduct literature searches or supply bibilographic materials for your own research.

For the latest BAD advice on Covid-19 for patients, please check the News and Media section of the website. Find this here. Our information for healthcare professionals is here.

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Urticaria pigmentosa

Urticaria pigmentosa (UP) is the commonest presentation of cutaneous mastocytosis. The other three are called mastocytoma, diffuse cutaneous mastocytosis (DCM) and telangiectasia macularis eruptiva perstans (TMEP). UP and TMEP are now grouped together using the term maculopapular cutaneous mastocytosis.

Mastocytosis means too many mast cells. Mast cells are part of our immune system. They develop in the bone marrow then spread in the blood all over the body, including the skin. They release histamine if stimulated by different triggers. Urticaria pigmentosa is composed of persistent brown or red marks, made of collections of mast cells that swell and itch transiently when rubbed, similar to a hive. In the majority of cases, urticaria pigmentosa may cause skin symptoms but does not progress to more serious types of mastocytosis.

More than 75% of cases of urticaria pigmentosa start in infants and children less than 10 years old, but it can also affect older children and adults for the first time. It affects male and female patients equally.

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