Muehrcke Line

Muehrcke lines are multiple transverse white linear bands parallel to the lunula of the fingernail. They represent an apparent leukonychia as they result from an abnormality in the vasculature of the nail bed.

Several conditions may trigger the hypoalbuminemia implicated in Muehrcke’s nails. Nephrotic syndrome, glomerulonephritis, liver diseases, and malnutrition are the most common, with nephrotic syndrome being the most common cause reported by Muehrcke. Other cases include periods of high metabolic stress (e.g., systemic inflections, AIDS). Trauma may also cause Muehrcke’s nails. Chemotherapy is another documented etiology.

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