Use of Infrared Thermography in Diagnosing Necrotizing Fasciitis in the Emergency Department: A Case Study

  • Mikkel Brabrand Department of Emergency Medicine, Odense University Hospital, Odense C
  • Jan Dahlin Department of Emergency Medicine, Odense University Hospital, Odense C
  • Marianne Fløjstrup Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Odense University Hospital, Odense C
  • Stine Thorhauge Zwisler Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Odense University Hospital, Odense C
  • Jens Michelsen Department of Anesthesiology and Intensive Care, Odense University Hospital, Odense C
  • Louise Gramstrup Nielsen Department of Anesthesiology, Hospital of South West Jutland
  • Jens Ahm Sørensen Department of Plastic Reconstructive Surgery, Odense University Hospital, Odense C

Keywords

Necrotizing fasciitis

Abstract

Objective: Necrotizing fasciitis is a difficult diagnosis with a very high mortality. However, thermal imaging has the potential to identify increasing skin temperature and rapid progression.

Materials and methods: We used repeat photographs taken with a thermal camera to visualize changes in skin temperature over time.

Results: An unstable male patient presented at the emergency department. Thermal imaging showed increased skin temperature of his left foot with a rapid increase and progression in extent within 1 hour. Necrotizing fasciitis was suspected and later confirmed.

Conclusions: We believe thermal imaging could be an important adjunct for the diagnosis of suspected necrotizing fasciitis.

References

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  • Holm JK, Kellett JG, Jensen NH, Hansen SN, Jensen K, Brabrand M. Prognostic value of infrared thermography in an emergency department. Eur J Emerg Med 2016 Dec 20. doi: 10.1097/MEJ.0000000000000441.
  • Published: 2017-10-18

    Issue: Vol 4 No 10 (view)

    Section: Articles

    How to cite:
    Brabrand, M., Dahlin, J., Fløjstrup, M., Zwisler, S., Michelsen, J., Nielsen, L., & Sørensen, J. (2017). Use of Infrared Thermography in Diagnosing Necrotizing Fasciitis in the Emergency Department: A Case Study. European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine, 4(10). https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.12890/2017_000719