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Eur J Pediatr. 2000 Mar;159(3):149-52.

Isolated cutaneous response to granulocyte-monocyte colony stimulating factor in fatal idiopathic disseminated Bacillus-Calmette-Guerin infection.

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Immunology Division, Department of Paediatrics, Hacettepe University Children's Hospital, 06100, Ankara, Turkey.


Severe disseminated Bacillus-Calmette-Guerin (BCG) infection is very rare and has been regarded as idiopathic when no immunodeficiency is present. This entity seems to be due to several new types of inherited abnormalities in the pathways important in defence against Mycobacteria. Although improvement with interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) has been reported in some patients, to our knowledge there are no reports on the effect of other cytokines in the treatment of these patients. We report here the clinical response to IFN-gamma and granulocyte-monocyte colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF) treatment in a patient with idiopathic disseminated BCG infection who failed to respond to multiple antimycobacterial agents. The patient showed partial and transitory response to IFN-gamma, however, GM-CSF treatment led to rapid improvement of skin lesions within 2 weeks without any effect on the progression of the disease in the other organ systems.


The response of idiopathic disseminated Bacillus-Calmette-Guerin infection to granulocyte-monocyte colony stimulating factor treatment was limited to cutaneous lesions. Granulocyte-monocyte colony stimulating factor may have acted to promote wound healing or the levels of this factor achieved in other affected organs may have been inadequate.

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