Epidermolysis bullosa signs and symptoms include:
- Fluid-filled blisters on the skin, especially on the hands and feet due to friction
- Deformity or loss of fingernails and toenails
- Internal blistering, including on the vocal cords, esophagus and upper airway
- Skin thickening on the palms and the soles of the feet
- Scalp blistering, scarring and hair loss (scarring alopecia)
- Thin-appearing skin (atrophic scarring)
- Tiny white skin bumps or pimples (milia)
- Dental problems, such as tooth decay from poorly formed enamel
- Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
Epidermolysis bullosa blisters may not appear until a toddler first begins to walk or until an older child begins new physical activities that trigger more intense friction on the feet.
When to see a doctor
Contact your doctor if you or your child develops blisters, particularly if you don't know the reason for them.
Seek immediate medical care if you or your child:
Aug. 22, 2014
- Has problems swallowing
- Has problems breathing
- Shows signs of infection, such as warm, red, painful or swollen skin, pus or a foul odor from a sore, and fever or chills
- Fine JD, et al. Inherited epidermolysis bullosa: Updated recommendations on diagnosis and classification. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. In press. Accessed April 9, 2014.
- Pickert A, et al. Immunodermatology and blistering disorders. Journal of American Academy of Dermatology. 2013;68:AB110.
- Pride HB, et al. What's new in pediatric dermatology? Part 1. Diagnosis and pathogenesis. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2013;68:885.e2.
- Brick K, et al. Epidermolysis bullosa pruriginosa: Further clarification of the phenotype. Pediatric Dermatology. 2012;29:732.
- Lehman JS, et al. Epidermolysis bullosa acquisita: Concise review and practical considerations. International Journal of Dermatology. 2009;48:227.
- Epidermolysis bullosa. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Epidermolysis_Bullosa/. Accessed April 10, 2014.
- About EB. Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa Research Association of America. http://www.debra.org/abouteb. Accessed April 10, 2014.
- AskMayoExpert. Pemphigoid. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
- Lebwohl MG. Treatment of Skin Disease. 4th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Elsevier Saunders; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed April 10, 2014.
- Pope E, et al. A consensus approach to wound care in epidermolysis bullosa. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2010;67:904.
- Gonzalez ME. Evaluation and treatment of the newborn with epidermolysis bullosa. Seminars in Perinatology. 2013;37:32.
- Lakdawala N, et al. The role of nutrition in dermatologic diseases: Facts and controversies. Clinics in Dermatology. 2013;31:677.
- Jurj G, et al. Epidermolysis bullosa: Report of three cases treated with homeopathy. Homeopathy. 2011;100:264.
- Healthcare problems. Dystrophic Epidermolysis Bullosa Research Association. http://www.debra.org/healthcare. Accessed June 10, 2011. Accessed April 10, 2014.
- Hand JL (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. May 8, 2014.
You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.