Alternate Names : Anhidrotic ectodermal dysplasia, Christ-Siemens-Touraine syndrome
Ectodermal dysplasia is a group of conditions in which there is abnormal development of the skin, hair, nails, teeth, or sweat glands.
Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors
There are many different types of ectodermal dysplasia.
Many gene defects can cause ectodermal dysplasias. The most common form of ectodermal dysplasia usually affects men. Other forms of the disease affect men and women equally.
Pictures & Images
The skin is the largest organ of the body. The skin and its derivatives (hair, nails, sweat and oil glands) make up the integumentary system. One of the main functions of the skin is protection. It protects the body from external factors such as bacteria, chemicals, and temperature. The skin contains secretions that can kill bacteria and the pigment melanin provides a chemical pigment defense against ultraviolet light that can damage skin cells. Another important function of the skin is body temperature regulation. When the skin is exposed to a cold temperature, the blood vessels in the dermis constrict. This allows the blood which is warm, to bypass the skin. The skin then becomes the temperature of the cold it is exposed to. Body heat is conserved since the blood vessels are not diverting heat to the skin anymore. Among its many functions the skin is an incredible organ always protecting the body from external agents.
Review Date : 10/28/2008
Reviewed By : Michael Lehrer, M.D., Department of Dermatology, University of Pennsylvania Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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