Critical Care and Shock

Purpura Fulminans Due to Staphylococcus Aureus: An Emerging Disease

Abstract

Background: Purpura fulminans is an acute illness commonly associated with meningococcemia or invasive streptococcal disease. It is characterized by disseminated intravascular coagulation and purpuric skin lesions. In this article we reported a case of purpura fulminans associated with Staphylococcus aureus.

Methods: The case was identified in the General Hospital of Mazatlán, Sinaloa, México during 2007. Staphylococcus aureus infection was diagnosed on the basis of culture result. Susceptibility to methicillin was determined. The ability of the isolated organism to produce super antigens was not possible to determine.

Results: The isolated strain of Staphylococcus aureus in the present case was isolated from secretion of an intact phlyctena; the organism was not obtained from blood cultures. The isolated strain was methicillin resistant. We used immunomodulator drugs as alfa-2a interferon and thalidomide, antibiotics and support measures. The patient survived with intact extremities.

Conclusions: Purpura fulminans due to Staphylococcus aureus is a newly and emerging disease commonly associated with superantigen production. It is a very aggressive and even fatal illness that deserves special attention.

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