77. Erythema Nodosum and Other Forms of Panniculitis

  1. Alan D. Irvine MD, FRCPI, FRCP3,4,
  2. Peter H. Hoeger MD5,6 and
  3. Albert C. Yan MD, FAAP, FAAD7,8
  1. Heather A. Brandling-Bennett MD1 and
  2. Maria C. Garzon MD2

Published Online: 24 MAY 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781444345384.ch77

Harper's Textbook of Pediatric Dermatology, Volume 1, 2, Third Edition

Harper's Textbook of Pediatric Dermatology, Volume 1, 2, Third Edition

How to Cite

Brandling-Bennett, H. A. and Garzon, M. C. (2011) Erythema Nodosum and Other Forms of Panniculitis, in Harper's Textbook of Pediatric Dermatology, Volume 1, 2, Third Edition (eds A. D. Irvine, P. H. Hoeger and A. C. Yan), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444345384.ch77

Editor Information

  1. 3

    Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland

  2. 4

    Our Lady's Children's Hospital, Dublin, Ireland

  3. 5

    University of Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany

  4. 6

    Catholic Children's Hospital Wilhelmstift, Hamburg, Germany

  5. 7

    University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA

  6. 8

    The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA

Author Information

  1. 1

    Division of Dermatology, Seattle Children's Hospital, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA

  2. 2

    Departments of Dermatology and Pediatrics, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 24 MAY 2011
  2. Published Print: 3 JUN 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405176958

Online ISBN: 9781444345384



  • panniculitis;
  • septal;
  • lobular;
  • subcutaneous;
  • erythema nodosum;
  • fat necrosis


Panniculitis refers to a group of disorders characterized by inflammation of the subcutaneous fat. While panniculitis is relatively uncommon in childhood, it can be a challenge to diagnose. The majority of panniculitides present similarly as tender erythematous nodules or plaques on the lower extremities. The most commonly used classification system for panniculitides is based on the histopathological features, usually divided into predominantly septal inflammation versus predominantly lobular inflammation, and then further separated into processes with and without vasculitis. Panniculitis may be a primary disease, but is more often a secondary process that requires further evaluation for an underlying aetiology. Erythema nodosum is the most common form of panniculitis in both children and adults. This chapter discusses the panniculitides that have been reported to occur in childhood.