Irradiation-induced morphea: x-rays as triggers of autoimmunity

Dermatology. 2011;223(1):9-12. doi: 10.1159/000330324. Epub 2011 Aug 25.


We report on 3 females with breast cancer who developed morphea at the site of post-surgery radiotherapy. One was suffering from other autoimmune skin diseases before the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer. Postirradiation morphea is a potential complication after radiotherapy, particularly radiotherapy for cancer. This troublesome skin disease can occur months to years after treatment, and is associated with remarkable morbidity and pain, and also cosmetic aspects. Therefore, it is crucial to be aware of this condition, and to try to identify patients who might be at an increased risk of developing morphea.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Autoimmunity / radiation effects
  • Breast / radiation effects*
  • Breast Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Radiation Injuries / pathology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Scleroderma, Localized / etiology*
  • Scleroderma, Localized / pathology