Necrotizing fasciitis after varicella.

E Gonçalves, F Furtado, J Estrada, M C Vale, M Pinto, M Santos, G Moura, C Vasconcelos


Necrotizing fasciitis is a rare and severe infection characterised by extremely rapid progressive involvement of the superficial fascias and deep dermal layers of the skin, with resultant vasculitis and necrosis. The authors present three clinical cases of necrotizing fasciitis; all three patients previously had varicella rash, rapid progressive spreading erythema with severe pain and toxic shock syndrome. Two patients had positive cultures of b-haemolytic streptococcus. Early stage differential diagnosis with celulitis, aggressive antibiotic treatment and pediatric intensive care support are essential. However, the main therapy is early extensive surgical approach involving all indurate areas, down to and including the muscle fascia.

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