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Molluscum Contagiosum–Induced Erythema Annulare Centrifugum

Chien-Ho Chu, MD1; Pei-Keng Tuan, MD1; Shih-Jyun Yang, MD1
[+] Author Affiliations
1Department of Dermatology, Cathay General Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan
JAMA Dermatol. 2015;151(12):1385-1386. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2015.2075.
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This case report illustrates how erythema annulare centrifugum may manifest as a reaction pattern induced by molluscum contagiosum.

Erythema annulare centrifugum (EAC), whether as a distinctive entity or a reaction pattern, manifests characteristic clinical and histopathologic features. It has been associated with infectious agents, particularly dermatophytes, other fungi (eg, Candida species, Penicillium species), bacteria (eg, Mycobacteria species, Streptococcus species, Escherichia coli), viruses (eg, poxvirus, Epstein-Barr virus, varicella-zoster virus, human immunodeficiency virus), and parasites. Less commonly, EAC has been linked to drugs, connective-tissue disease, sarcoidosis, hypereosinophilic syndrome, and pregnancy. However, many of these associations are likely coincidental, and in most cases, no underlying cause is identified. Herein, we report a case of EAC caused by molluscum contagiosum.

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Figure 1.
Molluscum Papules With Peripheral EAC-Like Reaction

EAC indicates erythema annulare centrifugum. A, Several 0.5- to 5-cm annular plaques on the bilateral upper thighs and left inguinal area. B, Close-up view of a lesion in the left inguinal area. Annular erythema is seen with trailing scale behind the advancing erythematous edge and central reddish-brown shiny papules.

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Figure 2.
Histopathologic Findings of a Skin Biopsy Specimen From a Central Papule on the Right Upper Thigh

Hematoxylin-eosin staining reveals typical features of molluscum contagiosum (A) and superficial perivascular lymphohistiocytic infiltrates, focal basal vacuolization, mild spongiosis, and mounts of parakeratosis around the molluscum papule (B).

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