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Gianotti Crosti Syndrome

Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
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What is Gianotti Crosti syndrome?

The gianotti crosti syndrome, more commonly known as the infantile papular acrodermatitis is a rare disorder which occurs during childhood. The disorder can affect infants who are nine months old to children up to the age of nine years.

Causes of Gianotti Crosti syndrome

The Gianotti Crosti syndrome is a medical condition in which the skin reacts to pathogens of viral infections. In the case of this medical condition, the injured organ or tissue is created as an aftermath of an underlying infection, particularly a virus. Thus Gianotti Crosti syndrome is considered to be a hypersensitive response to this previous infection. Further is in some cases, this previous infection tends to relate with an infectious agent endemic to a specific a particular geographic location.

Various pathogens which may cause this syndrome may be Hepatitis B virus and Epstein-Barr virus are the most frequently reported virus. There might be other virus which may lead to this medical condition are Hepatitis A virus, hepatitis C virus, Cytomegalovirus, Coxsackie virus, Adeno virus, Entero virus, Rota virus, Rubella Virus, HIV, Infectious Mononucleosis. Echo viruses, Respiratory Syncytial Virus, and Para Influenza virus. Virus. The syndrome may also be caused as an aftermath of a vaccination with a live virus serum. In more technical terms, Gianotti Crosti Syndrome is a particular infectious exanthem which is related to medical conditions such as lymphadenopathy and acute anicteric hepatitis.

There does not exist any relation between the development of the Gianotti Crosti Syndrome and genetics or any familiar predisposition.

Symptoms of Gianotti Crosti syndrome

The medical condition of Gianotti Crosti directly affects the skin of the affected child, hence the symptoms are mostly very clearly visible. The symptoms of this syndrome as visible in a patient are:

The major characteristic of the Gianotti Crosti syndrome includes average to extreme papular skin rashes. Papular will be the term used for smaller, conical portions of the skin coming out of the skin which may be caused due to the inflammation, accumulated secretion or hypertrophy of the affected organs or tissues. The rashes appear in the form of blisters which typically start appearing on the skin of the buttocks, legs, and arms, technically speaking the distal parts of the four limbs. The papular rashes then begin to spread and accumulate on the face of the affected child.


Purpura is a medical condition where in red and purple discolored spots start appearing on the skin which does not blanch when pressure is applied to them. Purpura is quite frequently accompanied by Gianotti Crosti syndrome when a medical test named TOURNIQUET test is done for the diagnosis of the Gianotti Crosti syndrome. The tourniquet test is a diagnostic test which helps to figure out the strength of the capillary walls and their fragility. In other words, it is used to determine the hemorrhagic tendency of a patient as well as reduced platelet count. In a few rare cases of Gianotti Crosti syndrome, extreme Purpura may also occur without the presence of any hemorrhagic disorder or the conduction of Tourniquet test.

Since Gianotti Crosti syndrome tends to be a hypersensitive response of the patient’s body to an underlying infection, the symptoms which may also accompany the considered medical condition are related to these underlying infections. The symptoms may be visible in the form of low-grade fever, sore and burning throat and more common symptoms of upper respiratory infections. Diseases such as jaundice may also accompany or lead to Gianotti Crosti syndrome along with inflammation in the liver.

The rashes on the skin lead to uncontrollable itching on the skin which subsequently leads to discomfort, pain as well as extreme flaking and dryness of the skin. Since the syndrome is clearly found in children, itching which is supposed to be avoided in such a case is inevitable and create maximum discomfort, while the prolonged and continuous rubbing enhances the rashes.


Lymphadenopathy is another biological disorder which may be a symptom of Gianotti Crosti syndrome. Also known as the Adenopathy, is a disorder in which the lymph nodes become abnormal in size, number or consistency. The lymph nodes may become swollen or enlarge in size. Upper respiratory infections, chronic fever, burning and sore throat, as well as running nose and the common cold, are symptoms which accompany lymphadenopathy. The swelling of the lymph nodes leads to lymph system blockage. Increased amount of night sweats along with the swelling and increased tenderness of the lymph nodes in the armpits and groin may also occur in few cases.


Hepatomegaly is the medical condition of inflammation of the liver which acts as a symptom of Gianotti Crosti syndrome and may also be accompanied by jaundice infection. The infected patient may experience loss of appetite, reduced weight, and extreme lethargy. In technical terms, hepatomegaly occurs along with vascular swelling, inflammation, and deposition of non-hepatic cells as well as increased cell contents both at the same time or separately.

Gianotti Crosti Syndrome Diagnosis

The conditions under which a patient is considered or diagnosed to have Gianotti Crosti syndrome are:

  • During, one or more than one clinical tests and diagnostic runs, the patient is proven to have the listed characteristics and clinical features of Gianotti Crosti Syndrome.
  • Further, during the clinical tests and diagnosis of particularly the rashes, the patient does not showcase any negative features related to Gianotti Crosti Syndrome.

The positive clinical features should be:

  • Pinkish, reddish or brownish papules which may be flat-topped and monomorphous.
  • The body portions such as cheeks, buttocks, extensor surfaces of forearms and extensor surfaces of legs should be involved.
  • Should last for minimum 10 days.

The negative clinical features should be:

  • Extensive truncal lesions.
  • Scaly lesions.

Treatment for Gianotti Crosti syndrome

Gianotti Crosti syndrome is a self-limiting medical condition hence not much treatment is required specifically for the condition. However, medical treatment is done for the accompanying symptoms which focus on the controlling and relief from itching and inflammation.

Gianotti Crosti Syndrome Pictures

Image of Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Picture 1 – Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Image source – healthool
Photo of Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Picture 2 – Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Image source – syndrome.org
Picture of Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Picture 3 – Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Image source – syndrome.org
Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Picture 4 – Gianotti Crosti Syndrome
Image source – medscapestatic.com

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