HERPES ZOSTER REACTIVATION ISOLATED TO THE ULNAR AND POSTERIOR ANTEBRACHIAL CUTANEOUS NERVES – CASE REPORT AND LITERATURE REVIEW

Mihai Lupu, Maria Iris Popa, Carmen Draghici, Iulia Solomon, Vlad Mihai Voiculescu

Abstract


Varicella -zoster virus (VZV) is a neurotropic virus which causes two distinct syndromes: primary infection presenting as varicella, mainly occurring in children without previous exposure to VZV, and reactivation of the latent VZV in the dorsal root ganglia, causing herpes zoster in adults. Herpes zoster clinically presents as a unilateral, painful, vesicular eruption, usually distributed to one or two adjacent thoracic dermatomes. As it is rarely seen confined to the upper limbs, few reports of herpes zoster involving the ulnar nerve exist in the literature, the majority describing patients who present with segmental zoster paresis of the upper extremity. This paper reports the case of a 73-year-old woman with ulnar and posterior antebrachial cutaneous nerve zoster reactivation and no history of immunosuppressive disorders. Therefore, rare occurrences of herpes zoster, such as the involvement of cervical dermatomes, should also be considered when faced with the differential diagnosis of symptomatic skin rashes of the upper limb, especially in elderly or immunosuppressed patients.

Key words - Herpes zoster; ulnar nerve; posterior antebrachial cutaneous nerve; chickenpox; female; exanthema.


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