Rhabdomyolysis associated with dengue fever in a lupic patient

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This report describes the case of a woman with systemic lupus erythematous (SLE) that developed rhabdomyolysis after being infected by dengue virus. There are only a few cases of SLE accompanied by rhabdomyolysis, none of them associated with dengue fever. Initially, the woman presented high fever, myalgia, muscular weakness, mild headache, polyarthralgia and thrombocytopenia reminding a lupus flare, but since the number of people infected by dengue at that time was high and the symptoms from both conditions are similar, a dengue serology was requested. After a few days, the patient developed rhabdomyolysis. She was then submitted to immunosuppressive drugs, urinary alkalization and vigorous hydration, which improved her muscle damage and inflammatory condition. The positive dengue serology was only available after the therapy above had been established. She was discharged in an asymptomatic state. This case demonstrates how alike dengue fever and a lupus flare are, warning clinicians that, especially during an epidemic, both diseases should be carefully differentiated in order to establish a correct and efficient therapy.




Verdolin, L. D., Borner, A. R., Mussi, H., Gismondi, R. A., Schau, B., & Ramos, R. C. (2014). Rhabdomyolysis associated with dengue fever in a lupic patient. Revista Brasileira de Reumatologia, 54(4), 318–321. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rbr.2013.02.003

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