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Pathophysiology:

■ Herpes Simplex Virus: Infection of the skin with HSV results in vesicular eruption. Viruses traverse cutaneous nerves and lie dormant in paraspinous ganglia until reactivated to produce recurrent disease.

■ Herpes Varicella Zoster: Respiratory infection with HV virus subsequently spreads to involve the skin. Reactivation of dormant viruses produces localized HZ infection.

■ HFM: Infection of the oropharynx or gastrointestinal tract with coxsackievirus A-16 or enterovirus 71 results in a viremia that spreads to many organs, including the skin and oral mucosa.

References:

1. Toney JF. Skin manifestation of herpesvirus infections. Curr Infect Dis Rep 2005; 7:359 -364.

2. Gnann JW Jr. Varicella-Zoster virus: atypical presentations and unusual complications. J Infect Dis 2002; 186 (suppl 1): S91-S98.

3. Scott LA, Some MS. Viral exanthems. Dermatol Online J 2003; 9:4.

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