Understanding Extramammary Paget’s Disease: Recognizing the 10 Key Symptoms

Introduction: Delving into Extramammary Paget’s Disease

Extramammary Paget’s disease (EMPD) is a rare, insidious, and often overlooked condition that requires prompt attention. Predominantly affecting older adults and leaning more towards women, EMPD is a form of skin cancer that isn’t as well-known as melanoma or basal cell carcinoma. However, its impact on those afflicted is no less severe.


The initial symptoms of EMPD can be misleading. Due to their resemblance to common skin conditions, patients and even healthcare providers can often mistake early EMPD symptoms for less serious problems like dermatitis or eczema. Such misinterpretations can delay diagnosis and treatment, potentially leading to more severe outcomes.

Therefore, the need for awareness and understanding of EMPD and its symptoms is crucial. The path to early detection begins with understanding what to look for, so let’s delve into the key symptoms that can be indicative of EMPD.

1. Persistent Skin Redness: More Than Just a Rash

Persistent Skin Redness More Than Just a Rash


One of the earliest signs of EMPD is often persistent skin redness. While this might seem like a commonplace occurrence, especially for people with sensitive skin, in the context of EMPD, it’s a symptom that deserves a closer examination.

Patients often find a red, inflamed patch, typically affecting areas around the genitals, anus, or under the breasts in women. This persistent redness can easily be mistaken for an allergic reaction or a simple skin irritation. However, when this redness doesn’t respond to common over-the-counter treatments or persist beyond an expected timeframe, it could be a sign of EMPD.

The difficulty with this symptom is that it’s quite common in many skin conditions, not just EMPD. It is this very ambiguity that underscores the need for a professional examination if the redness persists. (1)

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