Cutaneous myiasis with eosinophilic pleural effusion: A case report

Tao Fan, Yu Zhang, Yan Lv, Jing Chang, Brent A. Bauer, Juan Yang, Cheng Wei Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND Cutaneous myiasis is frequently observed; however, eosinophilic pleural effusion induced by this condition is rare. CASE SUMMARY We report the case of a 65-year-old female Tibetan patient from Qinghai Province, who presented to West China Hospital of Sichuan University around mid-November 2011 with a chief complaint of recurrent cough, occasional hemoptysis, and right chest pain. There was no past medical and surgical history of note, except for occasional dietary habit of eating raw meat. Clinical examination revealed a left lung collapse and diminished breathing sounds in her left lung, with moist rales heard in both lungs. Chest X-rays demonstrated a left hydropneumothorax and a right lung infection. Chest computed tomography revealed a left hydropneumothorax with partial compressive atelectasis and patchy consolidation on the right lung. Laboratory data revealed peripheral blood eosinophilia of 37.2%, with a white blood cell count of 10.4 × 109/L. Serum immunoglobulin E levels were elevated (1650 unit/mL). Serum parasite antibodies were negative except for cysticercosis immunoglobulin G. Bone marrow aspirates were hypercellular, with a marked increase in the number of mature eosinophils and eosinophilic myelocytes. An ultrasound-guided left-sided thoracentesis produced a yellow-cloudy exudative fluid. Failure to respond to antibiotic treatment during hospitalization for her symptoms and persistent blood eosinophilia led the team to start oral albendazole (400 mg/d) for presumed parasitic infestation for three consecutive days after the ninth day of hospitalization. Intermittent migratory stabbing pain and swelling sensation on both her upper arms and shoulders were reported; tender nodules and worm-like live organisms were observed in the responding sites 1 wk later. After the removal of the live organisms, they were subsequently identified as first stage hypodermal larvae by the Sichuan Institute of Parasites. The patient’s symptoms were relieved soon afterwards. Telephonic follow-up 1 mo later indicated that the blood eosinophilia and pleural effusion were resolved. CONCLUSION Eosinophilic pleural fluid can be present in a wide array of disorders. Myiasis should be an important consideration for the differential diagnosis when eosinophilic pleural effusion with blood eosinophilia is observed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4803-4809
Number of pages7
JournalWorld Journal of Clinical Cases
Issue number18
StatePublished - Jun 26 2021


  • Albendazole
  • Case report
  • Cutaneous myiasis
  • Eosinophilic pleural effusion
  • Hypoderma larvae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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