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Giornale Italiano di Dermatologia e Venereologia 2003 February;138(1):47-8

Copyright © 2003 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

The risk of traditional Chinese medicine

Massone C., Parodi A., Rebora A.

Section of Dermatology, Department of Endocrinologic and Metabolic Diseases, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy


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Sweet’s syndrome (SS) can be idiopatic or associated with cancer, infections, drugs and pregnancy. It can also be triggered by exogenus agents as a result of cutaneous pathergy. We present a case of SS triggered by the application of “Tiger Balm”. A 70-year-old woman presented complaining of fever and papulo-pustular rash on the middle areas of both hands, after applying “Tiger Balm” on the same site for 3 days. ESR was 82 mm/hr, C-reactive protein was positive, WBC count was 15,180/mm3 with 79% neutrophils. Patch tests were negative. Our patient met 1 of the major and 2 of the minor diagnostic criteria for SS. We report a unique case of SS following the application of a medication used in alternative medicine.

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