Mastocytosis: a rare case of anaphylaxis in paediatric age and literature review

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The term "mastocytosis" denotes a heterogeneous group of disorders characterised by abnormal growth and accumulation of mast cells (MC) in one or more organ systems. Symptoms result from MC chemical mediator's release, pathologic infiltration of neoplastic MC in tissues or both. Multiple molecular, genetic and chromosomal defects seem to contribute to an autonomous growth, but somatic c-kit D816V mutation is more frequently encountered, especially in systemic disease. We present a literature review of mastocytosis and a rare case report of an 18 month-old-girl with a bullous dermatosis, respiratory distress and anaphylaxis, as clinical manifestations of mastocytosis. The developments of accepted classification systems and novel useful markers allowed a re-evaluation and updating of the classification of mastocytosis. In paediatric age cutaneous forms of disease prevail and may regress spontaneously. SM is more frequently diagnosed in adults and is a persistent (clonal) disease of bone marrow. The clinical course in these patients is variable. Today diagnostic criteria for each disease variant are reasonably well defined. There are, however, peculiarities, namely in paediatric age, that makes the diagnostic approach difficult. Systemic disease may pose differential diagnostic problems resulting from multiple organ systems involvement. Coversly, the "unexplained" appearance of those symptoms with no skin lesions should raise the suspicion of MC disease. This case is reported in order to stress the clinical severity and difficult diagnostic approach that paediatric mastocytosis may assume.
Original languageUnknown
Pages (from-to)154-163
JournalAllergologia et Immunopathologia
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008

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