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Am J Clin Dermatol. 2006;7(3):193-200.

Eosinophilic folliculitis in HIV-infected women: case series and review.

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Department of Dermatology, Emory University School of Medicine, and Grady Health System, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, USA.



Dermatologic conditions are often presenting signs of HIV infection and may be the sole cause of morbidity in patients who have otherwise stable HIV disease. Eosinophilic folliculitis is a pruritic, follicular eruption that typically manifests late in the course of HIV infection. Most published reports of eosinophilic folliculitis have been in HIV-infected men. In those reports, a characteristic truncal distribution was present, with involvement of the head, neck, and upper extremities commonly seen as well. The objective of this study was to better characterize the presentation of eosinophilic folliculitis in women.


We conducted a retrospective chart review of six HIV-seropositive women with eosinophilic folliculitis previously seen in our dermatology clinics. We also reviewed the literature for cases of eosinophilic folliculitis in women and for clinical and therapeutic aspects of the condition, particularly in women.


In our case series, we found that eosinophilic folliculitis in women may predominantly affect the face and mimic acne excoriée. A review of the literature of HIV-associated eosinophilic folliculitis in women supports these findings. Regarding treatment, many therapies are available, but none is uniformly effective.


Given the dramatic rise in the incidence of HIV infection in women, who now represent nearly 50% of adults living worldwide with HIV/AIDS, a heightened awareness of HIV-related dermatoses in women is essential. HIV-associated eosinophilic folliculitis should be considered in the differential diagnosis of chronic, pruritic, papular facial eruptions in females.

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