Background: Facial papules are a feature of several clinical conditions and may present both diagnostic and therapeutic challenges.
Aim: To describe a grouped papular eruption on the nose and adjoining cheeks that has not been well characterized previously.
Materials and methods: A series of consecutive patients with a papular eruption predominantly involving nose and cheeks were evaluated, treated and followed up prospectively at tertiary care centers. Demographic details, clinical features, histopathology and response to treatment were recorded.
Results: There were five men and six women (mean age 29.9 ± 6.9 years) who had disease for a mean duration of 17.3 ± 11.1 months. All patients presented with a predominantly asymptomatic eruption of monomorphic, pseudovesicular, grouped, skin colored to slightly erythematous papules prominently involving the tip of nose, nasal alae, philtrum and the adjoining cheeks. A total of 15 biopsies from 11 patients were analyzed and the predominant finding was a dense, focal lymphoid infiltrate restricted to the upper dermis with basal cell damage and atrophy of the overlying epidermis. The eruption ran a chronic course from several months to years.
Limitations: Direct immunofluorescence could not be performed except in one case. Immunohistochemical stains for CD4 and CD8 could not be done owing to nonavailability. Phototesting was undertaken in one patient only.
Conclusion: Small grouped papules on the nose and adjoining skin with a lichenoid histopathology appear to represent a distinct clinicopathological entity. It may be related to actinic lichen nitidus/micropapular variant of polymorphous light eruption.
Keywords: Granulosis rubra nasi; lichen nitidus; lichenoid eruption; nasal pseudovesicular eruption; polymorphous light eruption.