BMJ Case Reports 2018; doi:10.1136/bcr-2018-225872
  • Unusual association of diseases/symptoms

Atypical case of mucous membrane pemphigoid in a 26-year-old man

  1. Seth M Pantanelli3
  1. 1Ophthalmology, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, USA
  2. 2Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania, USA
  3. 3Department of Ophthalmology, Penn State Health Milton S Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, Pennsylvania, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Seth M Pantanelli, spantanelli{at}
  • Accepted 24 August 2018
  • Published 12 September 2018


A 26-year-old Caucasian man with no previous history of chemical injury presenting with an inability to open his right eye was investigated for mucous membrane pemphigoid and treated. Examination was notable for symblepharon of the right eye and impetigo-like lesions on the face and neck. A biopsy with immunohistochemical analysis was significant for linear deposits of C3 and immunoglobulin G at the level of the epithelial basement membrane, confirming the diagnosis of mucous membrane pemphigoid. Although mucous membrane pemphigoid classically presents bilaterally in women in the sixth and seventh decades of life, our patient was a young man with unilateral cicatrising conjunctivitis who may have been easily misdiagnosed without a high index of suspicion. A biopsy is required in cases of cicatrising conjunctivitis so that even atypical cases such as the one presented herein can be appropriately managed.


  • Contributors DS and SP: conception and design, analysis and interpretation of the data. DS and SMP: acquisition of the data and critical revision of the manuscript. JHL: drafted the manuscript. DS, JHL and SMP: final approval of the version to be published.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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