Infective dermatitis of Jamaican children: a marker for HTLV-I infection

Lancet. 1990 Dec 1;336(8727):1345-7. doi: 10.1016/0140-6736(90)92896-p.


In Jamaican children infective dermatitis is a chronic eczema associated with refractory nonvirulent Staphylococcus aureus or beta-haemolytic streptococcus infection of the skin and nasal vestibule. 14 children between the ages of 2 and 17 years with typical infective dermatitis, attending the dermatology clinic at the University Hospital of the West Indies in Jamaica, were tested for antibody to human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1). All were seropositive, whereas 11 children of similar age with atopic eczema were all negative. In 2 of 2 cases of infective dermatitis, the biological mother was HTLV-1 seropositive. None of the 14 patients showed signs of adult T-cell leukaemia/lymphoma, though experience with previous cases of infective dermatitis indicates the possibility of such progression.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Dermatitis / etiology*
  • Female
  • HTLV-I Antibodies / analysis*
  • HTLV-I Infections / complications*
  • HTLV-I Infections / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immune Tolerance
  • Jamaica
  • Male
  • Recurrence
  • Skin Diseases, Infectious / etiology*


  • HTLV-I Antibodies