Which sonography findings are characteristic of necrotizing fasciitis?

Updated: Oct 17, 2018
  • Author: Steven A Schulz, MD; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

Sonography may reveal subcutaneous emphysema spreading along the deep fascia, swelling, and increased echogenicity of the overlying fatty tissue with interlacing fluid collections, allowing for early surgical debridement and parenteral antibiotics. [65]

Parenti et al retrospectively reviewed the ultrasonographic appearances of 32 pathologically proven cases of necrotizing fasciitis. [66] Ultrasonography revealed changes in the subcutaneous fat (28 of 32 patients), investing fascia (18 of 32 patients), and muscle (15 of 32 patients), which correlated well with histological findings. However, in some cases, ultrasonography missed histologically apparent inflammation in the subcutaneous tissues (3 of 32 patients) or muscle (8 of 32 patients). [66]


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