Eczema herpeticum

Eczema herpeticum

Eczema herpeticum (EH) is caused by recurrent infections with the herpes simplex virus in people with atopic eczema.12 The risk of EH is linked to an early age of atopic eczema onset and the presence of skin lesions in the head and neck areas.13 Approximately 20% of people with atopic eczema have a history of EH.13

EH appears as widespread dome-shaped fluid-filled cysts, which eventually dry out to form crusts covering eroded pits in the skin. Alternatively, tense red plaques with slits may occur. The most common sites of EH skin lesions include the head, neck and trunk.14 EH is a medical emergency, as complications can include meningitis, encephalitis and multiple organ failure.14

Eczema herpeticum

Image source: DermnetNZ

References

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UK/GEN/16/0051 Date of preparation: October 2016