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Int J Dermatol. 2001 Jul;40(7):434-8.

Cutaneous findings encountered in brucellosis and review of the literature.

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Department of Dermatology, Faculty of Medicine, Yüzüncü Yil University, Van, Turkey.



Human brucellosis is an infectious disease produced by Brucella species: small, coccoid or rod-like, aerobic, Gram-negative bacteria. The infection is common in developing countries, and can also affect the skin. Its prevalence is high in our region of Turkey, where stockbreeding is one of the main economic sources, compared with the industrially developed areas of Turkey, and dermatologic complaints due to brucellosis are fairly common.


One hundred and three patients with serologically and clinically confirmed brucellosis were studied in order to investigate the prevalence of cutaneous findings and their variability in brucellosis. Fifty-two (50.49%) were males and 51 (49.51%) were females with an age range of 4-70 years (mean, 30.45 +/- 15.08 years).


Of these patients, 14 (13.59%) had cutaneous findings probably related to brucellosis. These findings were more frequent in females (11 cases) than males, and most of the females (eight cases) were housewives; three were students. Urticaria-like papules and plaques were the most common findings; they were seen in six (35.3%) patients. One case had livedo reticularis and another palmar erythema, which have not been reported previously. No relationship was observed between the serologic values and the cutaneous findings.


Cutaneous findings in our cases were more prevalent than in other reported studies. It is important to emphasize that cutaneous lesions are not specific to brucellosis and may be seen in a variety of other dermatologic diseases caused by many agents; therefore, these agents should be kept in mind in the differential diagnosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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