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Practice Gaps
Feb 2012

Overreliance on Tissue Eosinophilia in Diagnosing Drug EruptionsComment on “Tissue Eosinophilia ”

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Departments of Dermatology and Pathology, University of Iowa and Iowa City Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Iowa City.

Arch Dermatol. 2012;148(2):194. doi:10.1001/archdermatol.2011.2686

Drug eruptions are common, occurring in 2% to 5% of hospitalized patients, and dermatopathologists and pathologists are often called on to distinguish those eruptions with a drug origin from the myriad of nondrug-induced dermatoses via biopsy specimens. Accepted dogma states that drug eruptions often demonstrate increased eosinophils while other dermatoses are always devoid of eosinophils. However, in this issue of the Archives, Hillesheim et al1 identify a practice gap: the overreliance on the presence of tissue eosinophilia in the incrimination of a medication as the cause of an eruption, in this case drug-induced subacute cutaneous lupus erythematosus.

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