erythema nodosum

What is it?

This is a skin manifestation that appears in the presence of other diseases, and it is not always possible to determine the underlying disease. With an inflammatory infiltrate in the subcutaneous tissue, subcutaneous nodules appear, usually located on the front surface of the legs (much less often on the thighs and even less often on the arms).

Causes and risk factors

Erythema nodosum is more common in women (4:1 than in men) and at a young age (25-40 years).

May appear in other rheumatological diseases (chronic inflammatory bowel disease, spondyloarthritis and Behcet's disease).

Factors that can cause this disease:

  • infections (the most common are streptococcal pharyngitis, salmonella or Yersinian enteritis; sometimes even tuberculosis);
  • medications (e.g. sulfonamides, penicillin, oral contraceptives);
  • sarcoidosis;
  • rarely neoplasms, usually associated with chronic forms of erythema nodosum, and more often lymphoma.

Which are the symptoms?

From protruding erythematous nodules with a diameter of less than one to several centimeters, painful spontaneously and on palpation.

The nodules resolve spontaneously after 4-8 weeks, gradually becoming less raised and painful, acquiring a yellowish color (like a bruise at the stage of resolution).

Erythema nodosum can be associated with fever, polyarthralgia, and sometimes swelling and inflammation of the ankles and knees.

How is it treated?

In the acute phase - taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). In cases where the lesions are more widespread, corticosteroids may be used.

Where do we treat it?

Within the San Donato Group, you can find erythema nodosum specialists at these departments:

Are you interested in receiving the treatment?

Contact us and we will take care of you.