Report of 457 sporotrichosis cases from Jilin province, northeast China, a serious endemic region


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*S.-S. Li.


Background  Most reported sporotrichosis cases came from South American countries, the USA, India and Japan. This mycosis is also endemic in Northeast China. However, the situation is not clear for international researchers due to lack of large series reported in English.

Objectives  To report and analyse 457 sporotrichosis cases.

Methods  Retrospective study of 457 cases of sporotrichosis diagnosed by fungal culture at the First Hospital of Jilin University from 1 January 2007 to 31 December 2009.

Results  In this series, the male: female ratio was 1:1.42. Mean age was 41.2 years. Cases from age group 51–60 years accounted for most of the cases (22.54%). A total of 434 patients lived in rural areas (94.97%). The onset of symptoms in 67.61% cases happened in cold seasons (winter and spring). History of trauma presented in 133 cases (29.1%). The mean duration of the symptoms before the presentation was 6.41 months. A total of 190 (41.58%) showed lymphocutaneous form, 252 patients (55.14%) showed fixed form, 8 patients (1.75%) showed disseminated cutaneous sporotrichosis and the clinical form of 7 patients (1.53%) could not be defined. Extremities and nodules were the most frequently involved sites and founded manifestation. Main histopathology findings were suppurative granuloma, tuberculoid granuloma and mixed inflammatory granuloma. A total of 75 cases (19.74%) had fungal elements revealed by Periodic Acid-Schiff staining. Patients responded well to potassium iodide (KI), itraconazole, terbinafine and combinations of these agents with a mean course of 2.17 months to resolve.

Conclusion  As the first report of a large series of sporotrichosis cases from China to be published in English literature, our study indicated a serious sporotrichosis endemic situation in Jilin province, Northeast China, with epidemiological and clinical characteristics similar to those of previous Chinese reports, but different from those in other countries. KI, itraconazole and terbinafine are effective for the treatment.