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Term: ichthiasis

ιχθύς /ichthis(=fish) because in many types of this medical condition there is cracked skin, which is said to resemble the scales on a fish although the scales appear next to each other and the skin is thus more reptilian than fish-like in appearance.

 Coined: Hippocrates (460-377 BC) classified scaly and dry eruptions as ichthyosis, leprosy  and psoriasis together under the term “lopoi= flakes <lepo=scale, peel). The same term (leprosy) was used to cover skin disorders also in the Old Testament.  The result of this was that a person with ichthiosis was considered to be a leper. Lorry in 1977 was one of the first to describe ichtiosis in the literature . In 1806 the French dermatologist Jean-Louis-Marc Alibert  (1768 – 1837) classified ichthiosis into 3 main groups:
1) Ichtyose nacre 2) Ichtyose Cornee 3) Ichtyose pellagra

In 1808 Willan described ichtiosis  in detail and he stated  that “Psoriasia and lepra  differ from Ichthiosis in being but partially diffused, and in having deciduous scales”  


Ichthyosis  is a heterogeneous group of usually congenital skin disorders which are characterised by dry rough and scaly skin due to increased keratinisation of the skin.  


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