For many children, a skin disorder can result in a complication of daily living, impairing a child’s ability to play, learn and be involved in social experiences. Even when the skin disorder is not contagious, many children find they are embarrassed by the complication and, ultimately, may suffer from complications of low self esteem.
One such skin disorder in children, known as mastocytosis is a complication involving reproduction of mast cells within the body. While mast cells, normally, provide a healthy immune response in the body, when the development of mastocytosis occurs, the proliferation of mast cells can lead to a skin disorder known as cutaneous mastocytosis.
Symptoms of cutaneous mastocytosis generally appear as ulcerated and lesions on the skin. This skin complication is attributed to the healthy production of chemicals by the mast cells, normally used to fight infection.
Believed to be the result of a genetic mutation, diagnosing cutaneous mastocytosis is rather simple: the healthcare professional will conduct a visual examination followed by, possibly, a DNA test to address genetic origins.
For children who suffer from cutaneous mastocytosis, the goal is to control the appearance of the skin lesions and ulcers while also controlling side effects associated with the skin disorder. Topical corticosteroids are commonly used along with antihistamine products to control itching and inflammation.
As a rare complication, children who suffer from cutaneous mastocytosis may also develop complications associated with skin cancer and even blood disorders, for this reason, following the strict guidelines of the dermatologist is important to ensuring every possible protection against long term health complications is achieved.
In addition to physical resolution of symptoms, children who suffer from cutaneous mastocytosis may also require the use of child psychotherapy to alleviate secondary complications such as low-self esteem and complicated body image. Because cutaneous mastocytosis can appear in virtually any area of the body, some children may find great difficulty in hiding the appearance of the skin disorder and, upon entering into school, may experience ridicule. For this reason, parents should utilize mental health services as an additional component of the child’s treatment plan.
As with any dermatological condition, the key to your child’s successful recovery and management of symptoms will lie in the early detection, diagnosis and intervention. When suffering from cutaneous mastocytosis, be sure to address not only the resolution of the lesions and skin ulcers but also the development of any potential complications such as cancer, blood disorders, and mental health disorders.