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Original Article

Natl J Community Med. 2016; 7(6): 536-539

Herpes Zoster in Children: A Clinico-Epidemiological Study Over 4 Years at a Tertiary Center In Gujarat

Pooja Agarwal, Amit Mistry, Neela Patel.


"Introduction: Earlier considered a rare disease, childhood herpes zoster is showing an increasing incidence. This study was con-ducted to study the clinical features of herpes zoster (HZ) in children below 12 years of age along with immune suppression status.
Materials and Methods: The study was carried out in the Department of Dermatology at a Tertiary Care Centre in Gujarat for 4 years. Children aged ≤12 years with a diagnosis of HZ were enrolled in a predesigned pro forma. Diagnosis was mainly clinical with use of Tzanck smears in difficult cases. ELISA for HIV was done in all cases.
Results: Total of 51 children aged ≤12 years were enrolled in the study. Male predominance was seen. The mean age was 8.74 years. 72.5% patients had localized dermatomal involvement and dis-semination was not seen. Majority of patients (51%) did not have any preceding symptoms. Prior exposure to varicella was present in only 19 (37.3%) cases. Evidence of immunosuppression on history, clinical examination, and investigations was present in 11(21.5%).
Conclusion: Although childhood HZ is increasing, atypical pres-entations and dissemination are rare. Immunosuppression does not play a major role in these patients. We conclude that HZ in children follows a relatively benign course as compared to adults.

Key words: Childhood, herpes zoster, immunosuppression

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