A 51-year-old woman with diabetes developed wound complications consistent with presumed infection 5 days after undergoing a carpal tunnel release. Despite multiple debridements, the wounds continued to necrose and deteriorate. A diagnosis of pyoderma gangrenosum eventually was made, and the condition improved with the administration of systemic corticosteroids.
Pyoderma gangrenosum, a form of neutrophilic dermatosis that rarely occurs as a complication of surgery, resembles a postoperative infection. Astute awareness of the condition can prevent a delayed diagnosis and unnecessary surgical procedures.
1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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