November 4, 1983

Primary Cellulitis due to Serratia marcescens

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine, Reading Hospital and Medical Center, West Reading, Pa.

JAMA. 1983;250(17):2348-2349. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03340170074034

CELLULITIS secondary to a gram-negative organism is uncommon, usually occurring in an immunosuppressed host. Rarely, cellulitis may occur via the bacteremic route. Unusual causes of cellulitis can occur by this mechanism. We report a case of Serratia marcescens cellulitis occurring as a primary infection in an immunosuppressed host.

Report of a Case  A 60-year-old man with a history of peripheral neuropathy of unknown etiology came to the emergency room with pain and swelling in his left leg.One day earlier, he had tripped and bumped the toes and calf of his left leg, not breaking the skin. Several hours before admission, he first noticed redness and pain at the site of a muscle-and-nerve biopsy of the left calf that had been performed three months earlier. The patient had no history of fever, chills, sweating, or recent infections. He was admitted to the hospital with a presumptive diagnosis of cellulitis.At