A Unique Pattern of Staphylococcal Scalded Skin Syndrome-Like Erosions in Patients with Atopic Dermatitis: Dermatitis flammeus

Skinmed. 2018 Nov 9;16(5):309-313. eCollection 2018.


We describe the clinical features of a novel complication in patients with atopic dermatitis (AD). Twenty patients, mean age 23 years, with AD who presented with staphylococcal scalded skin syndrome (SSSS)-like lesions were included between January 2008 and September 2010. Skin lesions followed a triphasic progression pattern from erythema to hyperpigmentation and then erosions. A symmetric and predominant flexural involvement was observed. Pseudomonas aeruginosa (PA) (38.9%) and Staphylococcus epidermidis (38.9%) were the most frequently cultured bacteria from skin swabs. Complete resolution was evident in all cases, and the recurrence rate was 35%. In conclusion, a unique complication characterized by triphasic progression to painful erosions was found in a cluster of AD patients. We propose the new term "dermatitis flammeus" to describe this phenomenon, with PA being one of the etiologies.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Dermatitis, Atopic / diagnosis*
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Staphylococcal Scalded Skin Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Young Adult