What is it?

Acanthosis nigricans describes a condition in which several body parts, mostly the armpits, groin, and the neck, become dark, thick velvety skin. Usually acanthosis nigricans is the result of an underlying disease such as insulin resistance, cancer, and cetain drugs and supplements.

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Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Confluent and reticulate papillomatosis

Signs & symptoms

The main sign of acanthosis nigricans is dark, thick, velvety skin in in body parts such as armpits, groin and neck.


Acanthosis nigricans can be detected during a skin exam. To be more sure about your diagnosis, your healthcare provider might decide to get a skin sample (biopsy).


There is no specific treatment for acanthosis nigricans. Special creams and soups might help with pain and odor. Treating the underlying disease might lead to the disappearing of this condition. Losing weight in case of insulin resistence and stop using drugs or supplements that causing acanthosis nigricans could ease the symptoms.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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