Lichen amyloidosis induced on the upper back by long-term friction with a nylon towel

J Dermatol. 2009 Jan;36(1):56-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1346-8138.2008.00586.x.


Primary localized cutaneous amyloidosis can take several clinical forms. In Asia, macular amyloidosis caused by prolonged friction from a rough nylon towel or brush is common, and macular amyloidosis and lichen amyloidosis occasionally occur together, as so-called biphasic amyloidosis. We report herein the case of an 83-year-old Japanese man with lichen amyloidosis caused by prolonged nylon towel friction. This patient presented with unique symmetrical papular lesions on the upper back and shoulders. Lesions comprised slightly shiny, brownish, fine uniform papules approximately 0.5 mm in diameter, showing a partially linear, annular or rippled arrangement. Although this case was caused by prolonged nylon towel friction, no coexisting macular lesions could be found. To the best of our knowledge, this represents the first case of lichen amyloidosis induced by nylon towel friction in the absence of the macular amyloidosis that is usually observed in such cases. We instructed the patient to stop the habit of nylon towel rubbing and prescribed a topical steroid ointment and cepharanthine. After 6 months of treatment, papular lesions became clearly flatter.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Amyloid / metabolism
  • Amyloidosis / etiology*
  • Amyloidosis / metabolism
  • Amyloidosis / pathology
  • Friction
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Nylons / adverse effects
  • Skin Diseases / etiology*
  • Skin Diseases / metabolism
  • Skin Diseases / pathology
  • Textiles / adverse effects


  • Amyloid
  • Nylons