Dermatologic Manifestations of Underlying Infectious Disease among Illicit Injection-Drug Users

Blondin, David; Crawford, Richard I.; Kerr, Thomas; Ruth Zhang; Tyndall, Mark W.; Montaner, Julio S.; Wood, Evan
March 2008
Journal of Cutaneous Medicine & Surgery;Mar/Apr2008, Vol. 12 Issue 2, p71
Academic Journal
Background: Drug use patterns and serious bloodborne infections commonly have dermatologic manifestations among illicit injection-drug users (IDUs). Objective: To assess how self-reported skin conditions of IDUs may correlate with underlying infectious diseases after adjustment for drug use patterns. Methods: Prospective analysis of factors associated with self-reports of skin rashes, cellulitis, oral lesions, and lymphadenopathy obtained from 1,065 IDUs enrolled in a large cohort study. Variables potentially associated with each outcome were evaluated using multivariate generalized estimating equations. Results: In multivariate analyses, drug use patterns were associated with cellulitis, whereas human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and hepatitis C (HCV) were not. HCV infection was independently associated with skin rashes (odds ratio [OR] 1.85; 95% CI 1.17-2.94). HIV infection was independently associated with lymphadenopathy (OR 2.00; 95% CI 1.52-2.63), skin rash (OR 2.12; 95% CI 1.57-2.86), and oral lesions (OR 14.95; 95% CI 9.41-23.76). Conclusions: Self-reports of IDUs, which could easily be obtained as part of a functional inquiry in a clinical setting, correlate with specific drug use patterns and underlying bloodborne infections.


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