Bateman’s Purpura – Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

March 19 21:28 2019 Print This Article

Bateman’s Purpura is basically a skin disease typical to youth, but Bateman’s Purpura may occur to the people at any age. These are extremely common lesions, particularly in the elderly. They result from very minor trauma which the patient may not even remember. The one depicted here is very dark. Lesions are ecchymoses (essentially bruises), and can be any shade from blue to black, depending upon the age of the lesion. Often, many are present on each arm, the characteristic location. They heal with a whitish, irregularly shaped scar, called a stellate pseudoscar.

Bateman’s purpura refers to flat, irregular, purple lesions that appear on your skin as you get older. Bateman’s purpura (BP) is a bruised lesion that is commonly seen on the sun-exposed extensor surfaces of forearms and hands in elderly individuals. The skin appears thin and wrinkly, almost flimsy looking. They are common, but not dangerous. It results in flat blotches which start out red and then turn purple, darken a bit and eventually fade away. It may also occur in the mucous membrane such as mouth and internal organs. At times, some drugs may also cause this skin disease as these drugs affect the blood platelets and results in Bateman’s purpura. It mostly occurs in the elderly population but it may periodically occur in young people. It affects both males and females equally and bateman’s purpura affects fair skinned individuals more as compared to other races.

Causes of Bateman’s Purpura

Find common causes and risk factors of Name:

  • Alcohol, aspirin, and prednisone can contribute to the formation of Bateman’s purpura. Alcohol and aspirin thin the blood, therefore making it easier to leak into the skin. Prednisone causes the blood vessel walls to become very fragile.
  • Mostly seen on sun-damaged skin of people over fifty.
  • Bateman’s purpura is due to the weakened state of blood vessel walls. Over many years, sunlight damages the skin and underlying blood vessels, making the walls very fragile. With slight trauma (brushing against something) the walls break and the blood leaks into the surrounding skin.

Signs and Symptoms of Bateman’s Purpura

The major symptoms of Bateman’s Purpura is that the skin appears thin and wrinkly, almost flimsy looking they are flat, irregular, purple lesions that appear on your skin as you get older. Purple blotches or bruises appear on the forearms, face, hands or neck. The macules are not related to pain or pruritus. The lesions generally last for one to three weeks. The macules are larger than three mm in diameter and they are generally present on the exterior surfaces of the forearms and on the dorsa of the hand. The lesions don’t extend onto the fingers. The lesions are present in the region of atrophic and inelastic photo damaged skin. It can be diagnosed through clinical examination and a laboratory investigation is only required if the diagnosis is not apparent.

Treatment for Bateman’s Purpura

Treatment may include:

  • Vitamin K cream applied to the skin daily has been shown to improve this condition.
  • Cosmetics can be used to camouflage the lesions
  • Daily application of alpha hydroxyacid lotions to the skin have been shown to increase skin thickness up to 15% in patients with sun damaged thin skin. This occurs through the stimulation of collagen production, the skins natural support protein.
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