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Varicella gangrenosum in adult: a fatal chickenpox complication
  1. Ashish Sharma1,
  2. Samarth Agarwal1,
  3. Anamika Sharma2 and
  4. Manoj Kumar1
  1. 1 Urology, King George’s Medical University, Lucknow, Uttar-Pradesh, India
  2. 2 Intensive Care, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, Delhi, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Samarth Agarwal, rebellite{at}


Varicella gangrenosum is a gangrenous ulceration of varicella lesions involving the skin and soft tissues of the body. The term was coined more than 100 years ago. This occurs due to superimposed bacterial infection. The presentation of primary varicella in adults is more severe with catastrophic systemic complications as compared with children. These complications include necrotising fasciitis, disseminated intravascular coagulation, wet/dry gangrene and death, as was seen in our case. Survival is dependent on early diagnosis and treatment. Adequate antibiotic treatment and particularly early radical surgical debridement should be the cornerstone of management. Less than 10 such cases are reported in the literature.

  • urology
  • urological surgery
  • general surgery
  • plastic and reconstructive surgery

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  • Contributors AsS: concept, design, supervision, processing,writing the manuscript and critical analysis. SA: concept, design, supervisionand processing. AnS: supervision, processing and writing the manuscript. MK: concept, supervision, writing the manuscript and critical analysis.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.