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What is Koebner Phenomenon?

Updated on September 11, 2016
Koebner's Phenomenon on the knuckles
Koebner's Phenomenon on the knuckles | Source

Koebner Phenomenon is a skin condition that is characterized by plaque forming on injured areas of the skin.

This condition aggravates the existing injury or forms new lesions on the injured area.

Koebner Phenomenon occurs in people who have been affected with Psoriasis.

This phenomenon is named after a German Dermatologist Dr. Heinrich Koebner, who was the first to notice this skin condition.

Meaning of terms involved in the understanding of Koebner Phenomenon

Skin Trauma - Any cuts, bruises, scratches, burns, tears, scrapes or lacerations are referred to as skin trauma.

Psoriasis is a skin condition that is caused by the rapid multiplication of skin cells in a short time. The newly formed cells push their way to the surface of the skin. This results in the skin becoming flaky.

Lesion - A damaged area of the skin.

Plaque - Skin Plaque is a lesion that is clearly visible and raised from the skin. It appears as a rough or smooth bump. The plaque can be white or red in color and can thicken to form a scab or crust.

Epidermis - Outermost layer of skin.

Dermis - The layer just below the outer layer of the skin.

Symptoms of Koebner Phenomenon

In Koebner Phenomenon, the following can happen to an injured area of the skin -

  • new lesions form on the area of the skin that is damaged
  • worsens the condition of the damaged skin

Causes of Koebner Phenomenon

When a person already has Psoriasis then the following can result in Koebner Phenomenon -

  • minor cuts
  • bruises
  • scratches
  • bug bites
  • poison oak
  • poison ivy
  • chemical burns
  • sun burns
  • Herpes blister
  • scabies
  • boils
  • dermatitis

Koebner Phenomenon can also be caused by injections, vaccines, acne, tattoo needles and acupuncture.

Protein induced Koebner Phenomenon

A protein called Stat 3 is involved in healing a wound. Usually, after the wound is healed the Stat 3 protein becomes inactive. In the case of Koebner Phenomenon the Stat 3 protein remains active and continues to produce more and more cells that result in thick patches of skin cells.

How to take care for Koebner Phenomenon skin condition

Koebner Phenomenon can be prevented by taking precautions and looking after your skin with great care.

1. After a bath gently pat your skin dry.

2. Apply a moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated.

3. Wear gloves when you work.

4. Avoid scratching or bruising your skin.

5.Wear soft clothing that does not scratch or irritate your skin.

6. Do not scratch your skin even if it itches.

7. If you get hurt, attend to it immediately.

8. Clean your nails to prevent fungal infection.

You have to take extra care to prevent Koebner Phenomenon.




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    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 4 years ago from Dubai

      midget38 I hope my hub helps, thank you for stopping by.

    • midget38 profile image

      Michelle Liew 4 years ago from Singapore

      My husband has this. I will forward it to him, Nithya!

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 5 years ago from Dubai

      teaches12345 thank you I hope your friend gets better soon.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      I have a friend who suffers from this and I feel empathy for her. Very useful post and one that will help so many. Blessings.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 5 years ago from Dubai

      tobusiness thank you and many people do not realize that they are suffering from Koebner Phenomenon because they do not know about it.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 5 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      Vellur, this a comprehensive informative hub, there are many people suffering from such skin conditions and this will be most useful. great job.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 5 years ago from Dubai

      DDE thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment. much appreciated.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Informative and well put together on Koebner Phenomenon: Inducing Psoriasis with Skin Trauma. I didn't know much on this health information but now I do. You have said it all clear and to the point.