Limits...
A study of Desert Dermatoses in the Thar Desert Region.

Chatterjee M, Vasudevan B - Indian J Dermatol (2015 Jan-Feb)

Bottom Line: The high incidence of these infections would be accounted for by the poor hygienic conditions due to lack of bathing facilities due to scarcity of water and the consequent sweat retention and overgrowth of cutaneous infective organisms.Pigmentary disorders, photodermatoses, leishmaniasis and skin tumors were found to be more prevalent in this region.Desert sweat dermatitis was another specific condition found to have an increased incidence.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Dermatology, Command Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India.

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Desert dermatology describes the cutaneous changes and the diseases affecting those living in the desert. Diurnal variation in temperature is high and is characteristic of the deserts. The lack of water affects daily activities and impacts dermatological conditions. Adaptation to the desert is therefore important to survival. This original article focuses on dermatoses occurring in a population in the Thar desert of India, predominantly located in Rajasthan.

Materials and methods: This is a descriptive study involving various dermatoses seen in patients residing in the Thar desert region over a duration of 3 years.

Results: Infections were the most common condition seen among this population and among them fungal infections were the most common. The high incidence of these infections would be accounted for by the poor hygienic conditions due to lack of bathing facilities due to scarcity of water and the consequent sweat retention and overgrowth of cutaneous infective organisms. Pigmentary disorders, photodermatoses, leishmaniasis and skin tumors were found to be more prevalent in this region. Desert sweat dermatitis was another specific condition found to have an increased incidence.

Conclusion: The environment of the desert provides for a wide variety of dermatoses that can result in these regions with few of these dermatoses found in much higher incidence than in other regions. The concept of desert dermatology needs to be understood in more details to provide better care to those suffering from desert dermatoses and this article is a step forward in this regard.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Colorful clothing worn by members of the Kalbelia community
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Figure 1: Colorful clothing worn by members of the Kalbelia community

Mentions: The population living in this region, especially nomads such as Kalbelias, Gadaria Lohar, Gujar, Raika Merdh, Dewasi and others, have limited facilities compared with those who live in the cities. They have no source of continuous water supply; they must depend on wells and limited water storage capacity. They are always on the move; consequently, they do not have houses. Instead, they have tents, which are easy to dismantle and construct. The tents are made from camel skins/cloth and they have no electricity, no kitchens, and no bathrooms. The whole family lives in the same tent that is sometimes divided by a partition. Nomads depend mainly on camels that can live in the desert, usually called “desert ships.” Sources of food are limited, and nomads depend on their cattle and gathering. There are very few types of edible plants in the desert. Clothing is usually helpful in providing protection from the sun and comfort in both cold and hot weather. They use elaborate clothing and various kinds of stone ornaments which not only have protective action, but also lend color to the monochrome of the desert [Figure 1].


A study of Desert Dermatoses in the Thar Desert Region.

Chatterjee M, Vasudevan B - Indian J Dermatol (2015 Jan-Feb)

Colorful clothing worn by members of the Kalbelia community
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4318057&req=5

Figure 1: Colorful clothing worn by members of the Kalbelia community
Mentions: The population living in this region, especially nomads such as Kalbelias, Gadaria Lohar, Gujar, Raika Merdh, Dewasi and others, have limited facilities compared with those who live in the cities. They have no source of continuous water supply; they must depend on wells and limited water storage capacity. They are always on the move; consequently, they do not have houses. Instead, they have tents, which are easy to dismantle and construct. The tents are made from camel skins/cloth and they have no electricity, no kitchens, and no bathrooms. The whole family lives in the same tent that is sometimes divided by a partition. Nomads depend mainly on camels that can live in the desert, usually called “desert ships.” Sources of food are limited, and nomads depend on their cattle and gathering. There are very few types of edible plants in the desert. Clothing is usually helpful in providing protection from the sun and comfort in both cold and hot weather. They use elaborate clothing and various kinds of stone ornaments which not only have protective action, but also lend color to the monochrome of the desert [Figure 1].

Bottom Line: The high incidence of these infections would be accounted for by the poor hygienic conditions due to lack of bathing facilities due to scarcity of water and the consequent sweat retention and overgrowth of cutaneous infective organisms.Pigmentary disorders, photodermatoses, leishmaniasis and skin tumors were found to be more prevalent in this region.Desert sweat dermatitis was another specific condition found to have an increased incidence.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Dermatology, Command Hospital, Kolkata, West Bengal, India.

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Desert dermatology describes the cutaneous changes and the diseases affecting those living in the desert. Diurnal variation in temperature is high and is characteristic of the deserts. The lack of water affects daily activities and impacts dermatological conditions. Adaptation to the desert is therefore important to survival. This original article focuses on dermatoses occurring in a population in the Thar desert of India, predominantly located in Rajasthan.

Materials and methods: This is a descriptive study involving various dermatoses seen in patients residing in the Thar desert region over a duration of 3 years.

Results: Infections were the most common condition seen among this population and among them fungal infections were the most common. The high incidence of these infections would be accounted for by the poor hygienic conditions due to lack of bathing facilities due to scarcity of water and the consequent sweat retention and overgrowth of cutaneous infective organisms. Pigmentary disorders, photodermatoses, leishmaniasis and skin tumors were found to be more prevalent in this region. Desert sweat dermatitis was another specific condition found to have an increased incidence.

Conclusion: The environment of the desert provides for a wide variety of dermatoses that can result in these regions with few of these dermatoses found in much higher incidence than in other regions. The concept of desert dermatology needs to be understood in more details to provide better care to those suffering from desert dermatoses and this article is a step forward in this regard.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus