Diagnostic odyssey of a cutaneous mycobacteriosis rare in central Europe

Tobias W. Fischer, Sentayehu Assefa, Heike I. Bauer, Tim Graefe, Matthias Scholz, Wolfgang Pfister, Ute Barta, Uwe Wollina, Peter Elsner

9 Citations (Scopus)


Cutaneous infection with Mycobacterium chelonae is an uncommon disease, although this atypical mycobacterium is an acid-fast bacillus ubiquitous in the environment. It is often misdiagnosed and treated as a fungal or common bacterial infection. We report a case of disseminated atypical mycobacterial skin infection of a 72-year-old woman who was treated with different topical and systemic antimycotic and antibiotic drugs over a period of 5 months without remarkable improvement. Eventually, repeated tissue cultures on special medium and performance of PCR led to the diagnosis of M. chelonae infection. The patient was treated successfully with oral clarithromycin within 8 weeks. In case of abscessing cutaneous infection, M. chelonae should be considered in the differential diagnosis of prolonged disease when common antibiotics are not effective after 2-4 weeks of treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number2-3
Pages (from-to)289-292
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 2002


Dive into the research topics of 'Diagnostic odyssey of a cutaneous mycobacteriosis rare in central Europe'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this