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Lymphangitis

Reviewed 06/2019
 


BASICS

DESCRIPTION

Acute or chronic inflammation of lymphatic channels; presents as red, tender streaks extending to regional lymph nodes 
  • May result from compromised lymphatic drainage following surgic...

DIAGNOSIS

HISTORY

  • Trauma to skin, cut, abrasion, or fungal infection

  • Systemic symptoms:

    • Malaise

    • Fever and chills

    • Loss of appetite

    • Headache

    • Muscle aches

  • Travel to a tropical zone or region with filariasis

PHYSICAL EXAM

TREATMENT

GENERAL MEASURES

  • Hot, moist compresses to affected area

  • Compression garments and weight loss may help lymphedema.

  • Abstinence from sexual activity (for sclerosing lymphangitis)

MEDICATION

  • Treat co...

ONGOING CARE

FOLLOW-UP RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Elevate affected area.

  • 48-hour follow-up to ensure improvement

  • Work up recurrent lymphangitis to ascertain underlying cause (other infectious organism, anatomic abn...

REFERENCES

1
Taylor MJ, Hoerauf A, Bockarie M. Lymphatic filariasis and onchocerciasis. Lancet.  2010;376(9747):1175–1185. [View Abstract on OvidMedline]
2
Prat L, Chouaid C, Kettaneh A, et al. Cuta...

ADDITIONAL READING

  • Babu AK, Krishnan P, Andezuth DD. Sclerosing lymphangitis of penis—literature review and report of 2 cases. Dermatol Online J.  2014;20(7):13030/qt7gq9h1v9. [View Abstract on O...

CODES

ICD10

  • I89.1 Lymphangitis

  • L03.91 Acute lymphangitis, unspecified

  • N48.29 Other inflammatory disorders of penis

  • B74.0 Filariasis due to Wuchereria bancrofti

  • B74.1 Filariasis due to Brugia malayi

  • B74.2 Fi...

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • Lymphangitis classically presents with erythematous linear streaks of the skin from site of entry (e.g., bite, cut, abrasion) to regional lymph nodes.

  • Patients with prior surgical lymph...

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