Strongyloides stercoralis, parasitosis, hypercortisolism
Patients with Strongyloides stercoralis infections are usually asymptomatic but massive hyperinfection may occur in patients with diseases associated with abnormal cell-mediated immunity or receiving immunosuppressive therapy.
The authors present the clinical case of a 49-year-old man with a history of diarrhoea and cramping abdominal pain, generalized oedema, petechial rash, melanoderma, cough and dyspnoea. He presented hypokalaemia and arterial hypertension and was admitted with the diagnostic hypothesis of Cushing’s syndrome or adrenocorticotropic hormone ectopic production. The patient developed respiratory failure associated with bilateral lung opacities and was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit. The abdominal computed tomography scan revealed liver and duodenal masses. The duodenal biopsy showed the presence of Strongyloides stercoralis and the liver biopsy showed the presence of small cell neuroendocrine carcinoma. The patient died 50 days after hospital admission. The high level of endogenous cortisol observed in this patient may have facilitated the progression to severe fatal infection.
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Issue: 2020: Vol 7 No 7 (view)