Fingertip necrosis: pneumococcal sepsis

Case contributed by A.Prof Frank Gaillard


Rapid onset of systemic illness.

Patient Data

Age: 40 years
Gender: Male

Right upper lobe consolidation present. The left lungs is clear.  No evidence of pneumothorax or pleural effusion.  No evidence of cavitation.  

This patient went on to deteriorate rapidly, was intubated and spend a few weeks in ICU with multi-organ failure. During that time his hands were noted to be abnormal.

The soft tissues of the tips of the first, second, third and fourth digits is markedly atrophic.  The second digit seems most severely affected, without however convincing evidence of osteomyelitis or septic arthritis.  The remainder of the hands appear essentially unremarkable, other than some periarticular osteopenia.

Case Discussion

This case demonstrates peripheral necrosis of the fingertips, in this case due to pneumococcal spesis. 

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Case information

rID: 18191
Published: 18th Jun 2012
Last edited: 16th Jul 2018
Tag: crop
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