Department of Dermatology, Venerology and Allergology, University of Essen, Hufelandstr. 55, 45177 Essen, Germany
Acne inversa is a chronic, recurring acneiform skin disease with inflammation of the follicular epithelium of the sebaceous glands and the terminal hair follicle. It primarily manifests in the intertriginous areas. So far, the aetiology of acne inversa is unknown. Smoking, amongst others, is being discussed and should be evaluated as a possible aetiological factor. In this study a retrospective investigation was carried out in 100 patients with acne inversa. The parameters; age, BMI, sex, weight, height, location of acne inversa, quantity of smoking, smoking behaviour and the date of initial diagnosis of acne inversa were considered. In most cases, the acne inversa is located in the axillary and inguinal areas. Overall, 96% of the 100 patients had a positive, long standing, on average almost 20-year, smoking history. On average, over 20 cigarettes are smoked daily. Over 50% of the patients are overweight. Merely 26.1% fall into the normal weight category. Our results suggest that especially smoking, but also obesity, may present an aetiologically relevant factor in the origin of acne inversa.