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Pediatric drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms: A systematic review of the literature, with a focus on relapsing cases.

BACKGROUND: Drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS) is a severe cutaneous adverse drug reaction with systemic symptoms. This study aims to investigate clinical features, causative drugs, and available treatments for pediatric DRESS, particularly for relapsing cases.

METHODS: A systematic search of the English and French literature on pediatric DRESS was conducted using the Medline, Embase, and Cochrane collaboration databases. Confirmed cases of pediatric DRESS fulfilling the RegiSCAR diagnostic criteria with a probable or a definite diagnosis were included.

RESULTS: After full-text article review, 144 articles were included, representing a total of 354 pediatric patients with a mean age of 8.8 years. The mean time from the drug intake until the onset of the first symptom was 18.9 days. Antiepileptic drugs were the main trigger, followed by anti-infectious agents. Relapsing DRESS was reported in 17 children. In comparison to non-relapsing cases, relapsing patients had more comorbidities. The initial clinical presentation was more commonly erythroderma. Facial edema, fever, and enlarged lymph nodes in more than two sites were more commonly found in relapsing cases. Systemic steroids were more frequently administered.

CONCLUSION: Pediatric DRESS is a potentially severe adverse drug reaction. Antiepileptic agents are the most common causative agents. Fever, facial edema, lymph node enlargement, and pharyngeal and visceral involvement predicted DRESS reactivation in children. Corticosteroids were the mainstay of treatment.

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