Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Zoonotic acquisition of cutaneous Sporothrix braziliensis infection in the UK


A veterinarian presented with multiple erythematous tender nodules over his right hand and arm. One month prior to the appearance of the lesions, he had treated a cat imported from Brazil who had ulcerated pustular cutaneous lesions. Despite antibiotic treatment there had been no improvement in his symptoms.

Biopsies from the patient were sent for histology, bacterial and fungal culture. Periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) stains showed a PAS positive oval yeast-like micro-organism with surrounding necrosis. Fungal cultures resembling Sporothrix species grew after 18 days with typical appearances seen on direct microscopy; this was confirmed as Sporothrix brasiliensis on 18S PCR. The patient was treated with oral itraconazole.

This is a unique case of cutaneous S. brasiliensis acquired from an infected imported cat. S. brasiliensis is a rare pathogen in the UK. This case has clinical relevance due to its unusual aetiology and in raising awareness of rarer infections associated with importation of pets and global travel. Clinicians should be aware of sporotrichosis as a differential diagnosis for cutaneous and extracutaneous infection in patients with a high risk of exposure, as well as the use of appropriate diagnostic tests.

  • Infectious diseases
  • Dermatology
  • Global Health
  • Tropical medicine (infectious disease)

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.