S: FIRST – http://www.firstskinfoundation.org/what-is-ichthyosis (last access: 2 December 2020); NIAMS – https://www.niams.nih.gov/health-topics/ichthyosis#tab-overview (last access: 2 December 2020).

N: 1. 1815, from Latinized form of Greek ikhthys “a fish” and from Latin and directly from Greek –osis, expressing state or condition, in medical terminology denoting “a state of disease,”. It was coined in Modern Latin in 1801.
2. Ichthyosis is a general term for a family of rare genetic skin diseases characterized by dry, thickened, scaling skin.
3. Ichthyosis is caused by a fault on a gene that is responsible for the skin shedding and regrowth process. In some cases, this fault develops sporadically (out of the blue) but in many cases, it is passed on from parents to their child.
4. How the faulty genes are passed on varies depending on the type of ichthyosis:

  • Ichthyosis vulgaris: This is the commonest form of inherited ichthyosis, affecting 1 in every 250 people.
  • X-linked ichthyosis: This condition occurs in males only and develops in infancy with tan or grey scales on the limbs and across the trunk.
  • Autosomal recessive congenital ichthyoses.
  • Congenital ichthyosiform erythroderma: This type of ichthyosis generally show signs at birth with the appearance of a collodion membrane on the newborn baby.
  • Lamellar ichthyosis: is a rare form occurring in 1 in 200,000 live births.
  • Harlequin ichthyosis: is a very severe, but extremely rare type of inherited ichthyosis (approximately 5 per year in the UK). It is evident at birth due to the very thick scaling all over.
  • Bullous ichthyosis: is another rare inherited ichthyosis. At birth the baby’s skin seems to be fragile and may show blisters, without much scaling.
  • Netherton’s syndrome: The incidence of this condition is not known but it is probably in the region of 1 in each 200,000 births in the UK. The newborn child is very red and has scaly or peeling skin.

S: 1. OED – https://www.etymonline.com/word/ichthyosis#etymonline_v_34666 (last access: 1 December 2020). 2. NORD – https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/ichthyosis/ (last access: 2 December 2020). 3. NHS – https://www.gosh.nhs.uk/conditions-and-treatments/conditions-we-treat/ichthyosis (last access: 2 December 2020). 4. Know your Skin –https://knowyourskin.britishskinfoundation.org.uk/condition/ichthyosis/ (last access: 2 December 2020).


CR: congenital, fetus, neoplasia.