Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Necrotising fasciitis: a ticking time bomb?
  1. Carlijn H L van Sambeek,
  2. Sander F van Stigt,
  3. Lars Brouwers,
  4. Mike Bemelman
  1. Department of Trauma Surgery, Elisabeth-TweeSteden Hospital, Tilburg, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to Ms Carlijn H L van Sambeek, carlijnvansambeek{at}


Necrotising fasciitis (NF) is a destructive bacterial infection and has often been described in media reports as a ‘flesh-eating disease’, which if diagnosed late is associated with worse outcome. Unfortunately, diagnosing NF is difficult due to the similar presentation of NF compared with other types of skin and soft tissue infections. The early presentation of NF only shows tenderness, swelling, erythema and warm skin. Moreover, NF is normally accompanied with aberrant laboratory findings, mainly elevated C reactive protein (CRP) levels. In this case report we evaluate the diagnostic process of a patient with NF without aberrant infection parameters; both normal levels of CRP and white blood cell count were seen.

  • general surgery
  • adult intensive care
  • infectious diseases
  • infections

Statistics from


  • Contributors CHLvS: writing article. SvS: revision and writing. LB: revision and writing. MB: revision and surgeon who treated the patient.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

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

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.