Necrotizing fasciitis is a rapidly destructive affliction of soft tissues, with a mortality rate that may reach 73% of the cases. It is characterized by a progressive inflammation and extended necrosis of the subcutaneous tissue and the fascia. Necrotizing fasciitis was first described in 1848, and later in 1920 Meleney identified 20 patients in China in which the infection was presumably triggered by hemolytic streptococcus, linking pathological bacteria to the condition. In 1952, Wilson coined the term necrotizing fasciitis although without successfully identifying the specific pathological bacteria involved. In most cases, both risk and aggravating factors are present, the main risk factors being diabetes mellitus, liver cirrhosis, renal failure, and immunosuppressant states. Location may vary, but most frequently the disease occurs in the limbs, the trunk, and the perineum. Treatment depends on the location and the time of diagnosis and may range from large incisions with extensive debridement to organ amputations such as those of the limbs or breasts. Treatment is complex and expensive, and besides surgery, includes the administration of broad-spectrum antibiotics, anti-inflammatory drugs, intensive therapy support, and long-term hospitalizations. The prognosis is guarded. The present case entails a 56-year old female patient who presented with many risk factors favoring the occurrence of necrotizing fasciitis, namely diabetes mellitus, liver cirrhosis (decompensated with ascites and portal encephalopathy phenomena), untreated hepatitis B infection, chronic renal failure with diabetic nephrotic syndrome, and obesity.
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Toma, Alexandra; Mazilu, Laura; Suceveanu, Andra Iulia; Gherghiceanu, Florentina; Sandu, Camelia; Bica, Cristina; Andronache, Liliana Florina; Paunica, Ioana; and Moroianu, Lavinia Alexandra
"Diabetes mellitus and necrotizing fasciitis – a deadly combination; case report,"
Journal of Mind and Medical Sciences: Vol. 7
, Article 20.
Available at: https://scholar.valpo.edu/jmms/vol7/iss1/20