Cutaneous and Disseminated Blastomycosis: A Pediatric Case Series

Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin Children's Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Pediatric Dermatology (Impact Factor: 1.02). 09/2012; 30(1). DOI: 10.1111/j.1525-1470.2012.01799.x
Source: PubMed


  Blastomycosis is a rare fungal infection that most often initially infects the lungs and can progress to disseminated involvement of the skin, bones, and central nervous system (CNS). Pediatric blastomycosis constitutes a small portion of total cases, but delay in diagnosis may result in significant morbidity. Seventeen pediatric cases of blastomycosis were identified at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin from 1999 to 2009 through retrospective chart review; 53% had evidence of dissemination (bone, skin, or CNS) confirmed by culture. Six cases presented with cutaneous lesions, and five of these were found to have other systemic involvement. These five nonimmunosuppressed cases of primary pulmonary disease with cutaneous involvement plus dissemination to bone or the CNS are reported in detail. The diagnosis of blastomycosis in children is often delayed, and dissemination by the time of diagnosis may be more common than in adults. Cutaneous dissemination may occur in immunocompetent children, may indicate underlying systemic involvement, and can be more readily identified than symptoms of bony or neurologic involvement. These reported cases indicate the importance of dermatologists recognizing and investigating all potentially involved organ systems when a patient presents with characteristic skin lesions with or without a history of respiratory illness.

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