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Chirurg. 2012 Nov;83(11):943-52. doi: 10.1007/s00104-012-2281-2.

[Pathogenesis, classification and diagnosis of necrotizing soft tissue infections].

[Article in German]

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Plastisch- und Handchirurgische Klinik, Universitätsklinikum Erlangen, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Erlangen, Deutschland.


Necrotizing soft tissue infections are caused by a variety of pathogens and may affect different types of soft tissue. Even today mortality and lethality are very high. The primary symptoms of necrotizing soft tissue infections are local pain out of proportion, swelling, erythema and crepitation in cases of subcutaneous gas. A systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) is often associated. During the last decades early recognition and initiation of an adequate therapy were able to reduce lethality to an average of 20%. The physical examination remains the diagnostic gold standard and may be supported by typical findings of imaging technologies, e.g. subcutaneous gas on x-rays and laboratory tests. After diagnosis an adequate antibiotic and surgical therapy should be performed immediately.

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