Severe bullous skin lesions associated with Chikungunya virus infection in small infants

  • Stéphanie Robin
  • Duksha Ramful
  • Julie Zettor
  • Léon Benhamou
  • Marie-Christine Jaffar-Bandjee
  • Jean-Pierre Rivière
  • Jacques Marichy
  • Khaled Ezzedine
  • Jean-Luc Alessandri
Original Paper



The aim of this study was to describe a pediatric case series of Chikungunya infection associated with extensive bullous skin lesions, a severe and unknown form of the disease, during the 2005–2006 outbreak in La Réunion Island.

Materials and methods

Retrospective descriptive hospital-based study in children presenting blisters ≥10% of total body surface area with laboratory-confirmed Chikungunya infection.


Eight boys and five girls with a mean age of 3.4 months were included. Blistering began after an average of 2 days after onset of fever and affected 21.5% (10% to 35%) of the total body surface area. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction of blister fluid (n = 5) was positive with a mean viral load sometimes higher than in concurrent serum. Histopathologic examination (n = 10) showed intraepidermal blisters. Hospitalization and repeated dressing changes under general anesthesia were required. No death occurred. On follow-up, long term repigmentation was excellent with sometimes cosmetic sequelae.


Chikungunya should be included in the differential diagnosis of febrile blistering dermatoses in small infants in epidemic areas.


Chikungunya Pediatric Blisters Arbovirus Skin Bullous dermatosis 


Conflict of interests

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stéphanie Robin
    • 1
  • Duksha Ramful
    • 2
  • Julie Zettor
    • 1
  • Léon Benhamou
    • 3
  • Marie-Christine Jaffar-Bandjee
    • 4
  • Jean-Pierre Rivière
    • 5
  • Jacques Marichy
    • 3
  • Khaled Ezzedine
    • 6
  • Jean-Luc Alessandri
    • 2
  1. 1.Service de PédiatrieCentre Hospitalier Félix GuyonSaint-DenisFrance
  2. 2.Service de Réanimation Néonatale et InfantileCentre Hospitalier Félix GuyonSaint-DenisFrance
  3. 3.Service des Grands BrûlésCentre Hospitalier Félix GuyonSaint-DenisFrance
  4. 4.Laboratoire de BiologieCentre Hospitalier Félix GuyonSaint-DenisFrance
  5. 5.Service d’AnatomopathologieCentre Hospitalier Félix GuyonSaint-DenisFrance
  6. 6.Service de DermatologieCentre Hospitalier Universitaire St-AndréBordeauxFrance

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