Indian Journal of Dermatology
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Year : 2005  |  Volume : 50  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 203-207

Clinical and morphological characteristics of herpes zoster in south India

Department of Dermatology and STD, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Pondicherry - 605 006, India

Correspondence Address:
Devinder Mohan Thappa
Department of Dermatology and STD, JIPMER, Pondicherry - 605 006
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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One hundred and seven cases (6 children and 101 adults) of herpes zoster were recruited over a period of two years. The frequency of herpes zoster amongst skin OPD cases was found to be 0.34 per cent. The male to female ratio was 1.74:1. The most common prodromal symptom seen was paresthesia in 25 (23.36%) cases followed by itching in 21 (19.62%) cases.Most common presenting complaint was pain in 97 (90.65%) cases. Ninety nine cases had classical herpes zoster followed by necrotic / ulcerated herpes zoster in 5 cases and hemorrhagic herpes zoster in 3 cases. Thoracic dermatome was the most common dermatome involved in 64 (59.8%) cases followed by cervical in 17 (15.8%) cases. Unidermatomal involvement was seen in 81 (75.7%) cases, followed by multidermatomal in 18 (16.8%) cases and disseminated in 8 (7.4%) cases. Forty six cases were screened for HIV, out of them; six cases (4 males, 2 females) were seropositive for HIV. Classical herpes zoster was a feature in four cases; however, one case each also had necrotic and hemorrhagic form of herpes zoster. To conclude, herpes zoster commonly occurs in young adults in India with presenting symptoms such as pain, itching and fever.

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