Actinic reticuloid is a chronic dermatosis of the face and neck that occurs secondary to exposure to light. There is a chronic dermatitic process with erythema and scaling, that evolves into thickened plaques.
Though usually UVA induced, the eruption may be caused by UVB or visible light.
In the differential diagnosis it is important to rule out airborne allergic contact dermatitis, as well as other photosensitive disorders. The inflammatory infiltrate can at times resemble that seen in cutaneous T-cell lymphoma, and indeed there is a suggestion that chronic actinic reticuloid can progress to CTCL.
A relatively mild form of actinic reticuloid usually secondary to a photo-allergic contact dermatitis, is called a persistent light reaction.
- With careful avoidance of ultraviolet and visible violet light and the use of medium strength topical steroids, there is usually slow improvement over many months.
- Resistant cases may respond to oral cyclosporine.