Medical Definition of Histiocytosis, Hand-Schuller-Christian

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Histiocytosis, Hand-Schuller-Christian: A disease in which histiocytes start to multiply and attack the tissues or organs of the patient. The disease usually affects children age 2 to 5, less often older children and adults. The most frequent sites of bony involvement are the flat bones of the skull, ribs, pelvis, and scapula (wing bone). Chronic otitis media due to involvement of the mastoid and the temporal bone is common. Diabetes insipidus affects some patients, mainly children who have systemic disease. Up to 40% of children with it have short stature.

Hand-Schuller-Christian disease is a form of Langerhans cell histiocytosis.

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Reviewed on 9/7/2018

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