Histomorphometrical characteristics of human skin from capillitium in subjects of different age

Prilozi. 2011;32(2):105-18.


The aim of this paper is to present the dynamics of changes in the structural components of the skin of the capillitium throughout the entire life by use of morphometric analysis. For this purpose skin biopsy specimens were collected from patients from Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Clinic and cadavers from the Pathology Institute and the Forensic Medicine Institute. The subjects of this research were patients, i.e. cadavers of different age, separated into five different subgroups according to this criterion (newborns to elderly). The results obtained with this morphometric analysis have shown an increase in total skin thickness of the capillitium (epidermis and dermis) by 1.7 mm (during the first year), 3.8 mm (puberty and adolescence) and 1.8 mm (beyond 55 years). There is no significant change in the case of the epidermis, only from 0.1 mm to the value of 0.2 mm. The thickness of the dermis from a morphological point of view, starts from 1.5 mm (the first year), goes to 3.7 mm (puberty and adolescence) and finally goes down to the value of 1.6 mm (elderly). The volume of conglomerates of sweat glands for the first group is 0.008 mm³ to 0.09 mm³ for the second. The volume of sebaceous glands is 0.01 mm³ for the first, 0.1 mm³ for the second and 0.4 mm³ for the third group. The diameter of follicles of fibres starts from 0.1 mm for the first group, and rises up to the value of 0.4 mm during puberty. The length of follicles of fibers is 1.4 mm for the first group and it reaches 3.1 mm in adolescence and old age. The results show that the morphology of the skin of the capillitium undergoes changes during human life as a result of changes that occur in the connective tissue of the dermis. The increase of thickness in the dermis is the result of the increase of thickness in the reticularae stratum, where the greatest changes are obvious. These changes occur due to quantitative and structural repartition of collagen fibres.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Anatomy, Comparative / methods
  • Biopsy
  • Dermis* / anatomy & histology
  • Dermis* / pathology
  • Epidermis* / anatomy & histology
  • Epidermis* / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Skin Aging / physiology*