Monday, January 14, 2019

Subtle Facial Lesion in a Four Year-old Boy

The patient is a four year-old boy who was referred for evaluation of a slightly rough patch on his right cheek that has been present for over a year.  He is otherwise well.

O/E:  There is a subtle 1.5 cm in diameter erythematous patch on his right cheek.  Dermatoscopy revealed a group of sharply demarcated plugs that appear to be comedones.  Clinically, this was not as evident.

Clinical and Dermatological Images:
 Diagnosis:  Small subtle nevus comedonicus.

Discussion:  I feel this is probably a nevus comedonicus.  I’ve only seen a few of these and all were obvious: not so with this case.  Not much is known about the evolution of these lesions.  Topical retinoids are of some value; but since this doesn’t bother the patient I am reluctant to have his mother rub a topical agent on the area for two to three months.  Does anyone feel that tazarotene is preferable to tretinoin in similar cases?  Comedone extraction would be easy, but can be traumatizing in a young child.  Once I hear other ideas I will discuss options with his parents.

1. Dermoscopy on nevus comedonicus: a case report and review of the literature.  Kamińska-Winciorek G1, Spiewak R.
Postepy Dermatol Alergol. 2013 Aug;30(4):252-4.  Free Full Text.

2. Nevus comedonicus: an updated review. Tchernev G, et. al. Dermatol Ther (Heidelb). 2013 May 25;3(1):33-40. Full Free Text.

Wednesday, January 09, 2019

Erysipelas in a 69 yo Woman

presented by Henry Foong
Ipoh, Malaysia

A 69-yr-old woman was seen with a 2-day history of rapidly enlarged swelling on the right cheek.  Initially she felt some discomfort on the right ear and then involved the right cheek.  She had no fever.
There was no history of trauma.  She had a history of hypertension. 

Examination showed unilateral swelling on the right cheek with increased temperature, tenderness and redness extending from right forehead to the right lower jaw.  It appeared oedematous, with swelling of the ipsilateral upper eyelid. It had a well defined raised border. The rash did not cross the bridge of the nose to the opposite cheek. No blisters were seen. Her regional nodes were not enlarged.

Clinically she has erysipelas.

TWBC 12,900 (N84%)
blood sugar  8.5 mol/l
BU and serum electrolytes normal
LFT normal

Erysipelas affects the superficial layer of the skin while cellulitis affects the deeper part of the dermis. There were no clusters of vesicles or erosions to suggest herpes zoster. She was not keen to be admitted and preferred oral medication as an outpatient  She was treated with oral cefuroxime 500mg bd for 10 days with wet compress dressing on the affected face. The erysipelas cleared with the treatment.