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Hand Infections in the Immunocompromised Patient: An Update

Gregory Schmidt, Hristo Piponov, Donald Chuang, Mark Gonzalez
Journal of Hand Surgery 2019, 44 (2): 144-149
Physicians are increasingly caring for immunocompromised individuals owing, in part, to the improved treatments and the increased life expectancy in these patients. Presentation of a patient with hand infection can vary greatly depending on the patient's underlying immune status. It is important to recognize and treat the infections quickly and effectively owing to the higher morbidity and mortality that may result from ineffective or delayed treatment in this patient population. The purpose of this article is to provide an outline of the most common and some of the more exotic organisms causing hand infections in patients with human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, diabetes, and patients on immunosuppressive treatment. We discuss presentation, clinical picture, evidence-based approaches in treatment, and possible complications. It is important to inform surgeons of the atypical presentation of hand infections and systemic infections with hand manifestation in immunocompromised patients in order to shorten time to accurate diagnosis and effective treatment.

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