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Authors Gander B, Kaye M, Wollstein R
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Journal Can J Plast Surg Volume: 20 Issue: 3 Pages: e44-6
Publish Date 2012
PubMed ID 23997598
PMC ID 3433828

Necrotizing fasciitis is a rapidly evolving, potentially fatal infection. Current recommendations advocate antibiotic administration and early aggressive surgical debridement. Aggressive surgery is associated with significant morbidity, leaving patients with substantial tissue loss and complex wounds. A case of suspected necrotizing fasciitis treated with minimal surgery is described. A previously healthy 48-year-old man presented with increased erythema, swelling and blistering of his left upper extremity. Despite a benign systemic clinical presentation, the hand and forearm were suspicious for necrotizing fasciitis, prompting surgical treatment. Surgical exploration found a significant amount of intradermal and subdermal clear fluid. It was decided to limit the amount of debridement. The diagnosis was Wells syndrome, eosinophilic cellulitis. Treated with steroids, the wounds healed uneventfully. It is important to consider the complete clinical picture before aggressive surgical treatment. A negative history for diabetes, atypical clinical presentation and benign operative findings are suggestive of a more benign diagnosis.

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