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04.07.2016 | Original Article | Ausgabe 6/2016

Journal of Public Health 6/2016

Facial skin findings are indicators of human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immune deficiency syndrome: a retrospective study

Journal of Public Health > Ausgabe 6/2016
Z. F. Zhai, L. J. Cheng, C. J. Zhou, Z. Q. Song, H. Yang, Zhu Shen



To explore HIV-related facial skin disorders among HIV-positive outpatients and the role in identifying HIV infection and/or AIDS.

Subjects and methods

We retrospectively evaluated records from all HIV-positive patients who initially presented at our Dermatology and Venereology Department (Southwest Hospital, Chongqing, China) between January 2009 and March 2016. We also compared the prevalences of facial skin disorders among HIV-positive and HIV-negative outpatients.


We identified 827 HIV-positive patients, who included 150 patients who initially presented with 1 of 14 different facial skin disorders. Noninfectious/inflammatory dermatosis was the most common diagnosis (109/150, 72.7 %), and infectious dermatosis was diagnosed in 41 cases (27.3 %). Most facial skin disorders exhibited a higher proportion of HIV-positive patients, compared to HIV-negative patients. Herpes zoster was the most common disorder, and psoriasis and eczema or neurodermatitis were secondary disorders. Some disorders, such as seborrheic dermatitis, exhibited a severe and refractory clinical manifestation. Photosensitive dermatoses were significantly more common among HIV-positive patients, compared to HIV-negative patients (1.9 % vs. 0.0 %). No malignancies were diagnosed.


There is a wide spectrum of facial skin disorders among HIV-positive patients in southwest China, and some of these disorders may provide the first clinical indication of HIV infection and/or AIDS. However, these findings require confirmation using immunological data.

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