European Journal of Epidemiology

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 79–85 | Cite as

Treatment and serological studies of an Italian case of penicilliosis marneffei contracted in Thailand by a drug addict infected with the human immunodeficiency virus

  • M. A. Viviani
  • A. M. Tortorano
  • G. Rizzardini
  • T. Quirino
  • L. Kaufman
  • A. A. Padhye
  • L. Ajello
Article

Abstract

A case of disseminated penicilliosis marneffei, the first to be diagnosed in Italy, is described in a male HIV-positive drug addict. The patient had visited Thailand several times in the two years prior to his hospitalization. The presenting signs were fever, productive cough, facial skin papules and pustules, nodules on both thumbs and oropharyngeal candidiasis.

Penicillium marneffei was isolated from a series of blood specimens with the lysis centrifugation procedure. Septate, yeast-like cells were observed in histological sections of the nodules and sputum smears.

The patient was treated for 6 weeks with amphotericin B (total dosage 1,400 mg) and flucytosine (150 mg/kg/die) for the first 3 weeks. Prompt clinical improvement and sterilization of all biological specimens were attained. Itraconazole was administered as maintenance therapy (400 mg/die for the first month and 200 mg afterward). During the follow-up period, no relapse was observed. The patient, however, did succumb to a variety of non-mycotic infections and died nine months after start of therapy. At autopsy, P. marneffei was not detected in his tissues.

Serological studies were performed with a micro-immunodiffusion procedure using a mycelial culture filtrate antigen of P. marneffei. Sera taken early in the course of the disease gave positive antibody reactions. Whereas sera taken 3–5 months following therapy were negative.

All known cases of penicilliosis marneffei in bamboo rats and in humans among the inhabitants and visitors to the endemic areas of P. marneffei in South East Asia and Indonesia are summarized.

Key words

Penicilliosis marneffei Drug addict AIDS Thailand Italy - Serology Therapy 

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Copyright information

© Gustav Fischer 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. A. Viviani
    • 1
  • A. M. Tortorano
    • 1
  • G. Rizzardini
    • 2
  • T. Quirino
    • 2
  • L. Kaufman
    • 3
  • A. A. Padhye
    • 3
  • L. Ajello
    • 4
  1. 1.Istituto di Igiene e Medicina PreventivaUniversità degli Studi di MilanoMilanoItaly
  2. 2.1° Divisione di Malattie InfettiveOspedale L. SaccoMilanoItaly
  3. 3.Division of Bacterial and Mycotic Diseases - National Center for Infectious Diseases and PreventionCenters for Disease ControlAtlantaUSA
  4. 4.Department of OphthalmologyEmory University School of MedicineAtlantaUSA

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