A rare association of cutaneous leukocytoclastic angiitis (hypersensitivity vasculitis) and hypersensitivity pneumonia (extrinsic allergic alveolitis) in a pigeon breeder - case report and literature review

Vol. 60 No. 1, 2019


Horatiu-Remus Moldovan, Nina Ionovici, Florina Nechita, Emoke Horvath, Edith Simona Ianosi, Eniko Gabriela Papp, Horatiu Valeriu Popoviciu, Gabriela Jimborean, Gabriela Moldovan, Maria-Ancuta Vlasiu, Simona Szasz

Extrinsic allergic alveolitis is an occupational condition intensively studied and published about, unlike cutaneous leukocytoclastic angiitis. The coexistence of these two diseases is even more rare in the same patient with exposure to occupational pollutants of animal origin. We present the case of a 44-year-old man, a pigeon breeder admitted to hospital with a pruritic purpuric eruption and lower limb paresthesia, dyspnea on exertion, polymyalgia rheumatica, mixed polyarthralgias. Based on the clinical, paraclinical and laboratory investigations (electroneuromyography, plethysmography, computed tomography scan, musculocutaneous biopsy, current laboratory tests and immunoassays), the main diagnoses of extrinsic allergic alveolitis and leukocytoclastic vasculitis were determined. The patient underwent treatment with corticosteroids with a favorable outcome, but which becomes aggravated by the occurrence of necrotic skin lesions at the cessation of corticosteroid therapy on the patient s own initiative. After the resumption of the corticosteroid therapy, the lesions and symptoms improve. To our knowledge, this case report is the first one that describes an association of two major conditions, extrinsic allergic alveolitis and cutaneous leukocytoclastic angiitis, in the same clinical context of an occupational exposure to specific pollutants. Long-term corticosteroid therapy has proved to be useful in preventing relapses and improving the patient s clinical status with the association of cutaneous leukocytoclastic angiitis and extrinsic allergic alveolitis. Considering our findings in this case report, we may suggest the inclusion of systemic vasculitis on the list of recognized professional diseases.

Corresponding author: Nina Ionovici, Associate Professor, MD, PhD; e-mail: ninaionovici@yahoo.com; Florina Nechita, Lecturer, PhD; e-mail: florina.nechita@yahoo.com

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