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Expert Rev Anti Infect Ther. 2005 Apr;3(2):279-94.

Necrotizing fasciitis: pathogenesis and treatment.

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Ann Arbor Veterans Affairs Hospital, Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Internal Medicine, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.


Necrotizing fasciitis is a rapidly progressive, life-threatening infection and a true infectious disease emergency. Despite much clinical experience, the management of this disease remains suboptimal, with mortality rates remaining approximately 30%. Necrotizing fasciitis rarely presents with obvious signs and symptoms and delays in diagnosis enhance mortality. Therefore, successful patient care depends on the physician's acumen and index of suspicion. Prompt surgical debridement, intravenous antibiotics, fluid and electrolyte management, and analgesia are mainstays of therapy. Adjunctive clindamycin, hyperbaric oxygen therapy and intravenous immunoglobulin are frequently employed in the treatment of necrotizing fasciitis, but their efficacy has not been rigorously established. Improved understanding of the pathogenesis of necrotizing fasciitis has revealed new targets for rationally designed therapies to improve morbidity and mortality.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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