Dermatitis Herpetiformis as the Initial Presentation of Primary Biliary Cholangitis in a Male with Gluten Sensitivity

Cureus. 2017 May 14;9(5):e1247. doi: 10.7759/cureus.1247.


Celiac disease is commonly associated with elevated liver enzymes that normalize on a gluten-free diet. Celiac disease is rarely described in patients with primary biliary cholangitis. Dermatitis herpetiformis is the skin manifestation of the celiac disease that is very rarely associated with primary biliary cirrhosis. We present the case of a 62-year-old man who presented with severe chronic pruritus, in whom a diagnosis of primary biliary cholangitis was made initially. However, in the presence of atypical skin lesions, not confirming to chronic cholestasis, an in-depth evaluation including histopathological examination led to the diagnosis of dermatitis herpetiformis associated with gluten sensitivity. Gluten-free diet and medical treatment with dapsone led to beneficial clinical outcomes.

Keywords: celiac disease; cholestasis; cirrhosis; dermatitis herpetiformis; gluten sensitivity; pathology; pbc; portal hypertension; pruritus; variceal bleeding.

Publication types

  • Case Reports