About Acrodermatitis Enteropathica

What is Acrodermatitis Enteropathica?

Acrodermatitis enteropathica is a rare inherited disorder that affects the skin, hair, and nails. It is caused by a deficiency of zinc in the body. Symptoms include dry, scaly skin, hair loss, and nail abnormalities. Treatment involves supplementing the diet with zinc and other vitamins and minerals.

What are the symptoms of Acrodermatitis Enteropathica?

The symptoms of Acrodermatitis Enteropathica include:

-Skin rash, usually on the hands, feet, and face

-Dry, scaly skin

-Hair loss


-Weight loss


-Loss of appetite



-Muscle weakness



-Behavioral changes

-Delayed growth and development

What are the causes of Acrodermatitis Enteropathica?

Acrodermatitis Enteropathica is a rare genetic disorder caused by a deficiency of zinc in the body. It is caused by mutations in the SLC39A4 gene, which is responsible for the production of a protein that helps transport zinc into cells. Other causes of Acrodermatitis Enteropathica include malabsorption syndromes, such as celiac disease, Crohn's disease, and cystic fibrosis, as well as certain medications, such as diuretics and antibiotics.

What are the treatments for Acrodermatitis Enteropathica?

The primary treatment for Acrodermatitis Enteropathica is to supplement the patient's diet with zinc. This can be done through oral zinc supplements, zinc-fortified foods, or intravenous zinc. Other treatments may include topical steroids, antibiotics, and antifungal medications. In some cases, a special diet may be recommended to help the patient absorb more zinc from their food.

What are the risk factors for Acrodermatitis Enteropathica?

1. Genetic predisposition: Acrodermatitis enteropathica is caused by a genetic mutation that affects the body's ability to absorb zinc.

2. Malnutrition: A diet that is low in zinc can lead to a deficiency of this essential mineral, which can cause acrodermatitis enteropathica.

3. Certain medications: Certain medications, such as diuretics, can interfere with the body's ability to absorb zinc.

4. Gastrointestinal disorders: Certain gastrointestinal disorders, such as Crohn's disease, can interfere with the body's ability to absorb zinc.

5. Alcoholism: Alcoholism can lead to a zinc deficiency, which can cause acrodermatitis enteropathica.

Is there a cure/medications for Acrodermatitis Enteropathica?

Yes, there is a cure for Acrodermatitis Enteropathica. The primary treatment is to supplement the diet with zinc, either orally or through injections. Other medications, such as antibiotics, may also be prescribed to treat any secondary infections.