"LONDON (Reuters) - Karl Marx, who complained of excruciating boils,
actually suffered from a chronic skin disease with known psychological
effects that may well have influenced his writings, a British expert said on
Sam Shuster, professor of dermatology at the University of East Anglia,
believes the revolutionary thinker had hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) in
which the apocrine sweat glands -- found mainly in the armpits and groin --
become blocked and inflamed.
"In addition to reducing his ability to work, which contributed to his
depressing poverty, hidradenitis greatly reduced his self-esteem," said
Shuster, who published his findings in the British Journal of Dermatology.
"The bourgeoisie will remember my carbuncles until their dying day," Marx
told Friedrich Engels in a letter from 1867. "