Mycobacterial infections may emerge from fractional resurfacing

February 19, 2013

Papules and pustules after patients undergo resurfacing procedures with a fractional CO2 laser may be caused by nontuberculous mycobacterial infection, according to a recent study.

 

Papules and pustules after patients undergo resurfacing procedures with a fractional CO2 laser may be caused by nontuberculous mycobacterial infection, according to a recent study.

Researchers with the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, reviewed two cases of nontuberculous mycobacterial infection that occurred after patients were treated with a fractionated CO2 laser at a private clinic, according to the study. The patients had developed densely distributed erythematous papules and pustules within two weeks of undergoing laser resurfacing treatments.

Patients’ infections cleared after treatment with a four-month multidrug course, according to the study. Despite an environmental investigation of the clinic, investigators could find no source for the infection.

“The case isolates differed from each other and from isolates obtained from the clinic, suggesting that the infection was acquired by postprocedure exposure,” researchers noted. “Papules and pustules after fractionated CO2 resurfacing should raise the suspicion of nontuberculous mycobacterial infection.”

The study was published in the Emerging Infectious Disease Journal.