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Nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis

Other Names for this Disease
  • Panniculitis nodular nonsuppurative
  • Weber Christian disease
  • Weber-Christian disease
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What is nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis?

How might nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis be treated?

What is nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis?

Nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis describes a rare group of skin disorders characterized by tender, painful bumps below the surface of the skin (subcutaneous nodules) that usually lead to inflammation of the subcutaneous layer of fat (panniculitis). These nodules tend to be 1-2 centimeters in length and most often affect the legs and feet. In most people, this condition is associated with fever, a general feeling of ill health (malaise), muscle pain, and/or abdominal pain. These symptoms may subside after a few days or weeks and may recur weeks, months, or years later. The exact cause of nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis is unknown.[1]
Last updated: 8/30/2011

How might nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis be treated?

Treatment for nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis (NNP) generally aims at controlling and relieving the symptoms that an individual has. Before treatment is begun, it should first be determined whether an affected individual has the condition secondary to another underlying disorder because treatment of the underlying disorder may relieve the symptoms of NNP. In some cases, skin lesions heal spontaneously (remission) but the lesions often later return.[2] Medications used to treat the condition may include systemic steroids (such as prednisone) to suppress sudden attacks; nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to reduce fever and other signs of malaise; and/or immunosuppressive drugs.[3][4] Relief of symptoms in some affected individuals has also been reported with fibrinolytic agents (medications that help prevent blood clots), hydroxychloroquine, azathioprine, thalidomide, cyclophosphamide, tetracycline, cyclosporin, mycophenolate, and clofazimine.[3][4]

More detailed information about the management of nodular nonsuppurative panniculitis is available on eMedicine's Web site and can be viewed by clicking here.
Last updated: 12/9/2011

  1. Panniculitis, Idiopathic Nodular. National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). 2007; Accessed 8/30/2011.
  2. Panniculitis, Idiopathic Nodular. NORD. July 23, 2007; Accessed 12/9/2011.
  3. Nodular non-suppurative panniculitis. Orphanet. March 2007; Accessed 12/9/2011.
  4. Angelo P Giardino. Weber-Christian Disease. eMedicine. July 28, 2010; Accessed 12/9/2011.