Erythema elevatum diutinum: a case report and review of literature

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Erythema elevatum diutinum (EED) is a rare cutaneous leukocytoclastic vasculitis thought to be related to increased levels of circulating antibodies. It has been shown to be associated with HIV infection, tuberculosis, as well as various autoimmune diseases. A retrospective review of all cases of EED indexed in PubMed between 1990 and 2014 was performed. Inclusion criteria for articles was availability of full text in English and a biopsy-confirmed diagnosis of EED. All other articles were excluded. Cases were stratified by age and anatomic location of the lesions. Treatment response was coded as “complete,” “partial,” and “none.” A total of 133 cases of EED with 381 lesions detailed in case reports and case series were included. Twenty-one cases were associated with HIV. Of 47 patients with reported paraproteinemias, IgA paraproteinemia was found in 57.45%, IgG paraproteinemia in 29.8%, IgM paraproteinemia in 10.6%, and IgD paraproteinemia in 2.1% of cases. Of 40 (30.1%) patients with reported comorbid autoimmune disease, rheumatoid arthritis was associated with 10 cases. Cancer was found to be associated with 9.77% of cases. Seventy-five patients were treated with dapsone, with 36 (48%) achieving complete treatment response, 24 (32%) achieving partial response, and seven (9.3%) achieving no response. Keeping the clinical associations of EED in mind, especially malignancy, is critical in management of the disease. More structured studies need to take place in order to fully define the mechanisms and strength of these associations.

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