Cutaneous Lagenidium deciduum infection in a patient with relapsed acute myeloid leukemia

Joanna Theophilopoulos, Rebekah King, Autumn Citta, Constance Alford, Natalie Dotson, Connie Cañete-Gibas, Carmita Sanders, Nathan Wiederhold, John A. Ligon, Connie Trieu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Lagenidium deciduum is an oomycete that can cause infections in mammals that present similarly to pythiosis and mucormycosis. Most of the existing case reports have occurred in canines and have been fatal. In animals, medical therapy has not been successful, so surgical excision is the mainstay of treatment. Lagenidium sp. infections in humans are rare. There is only one case of a human Lagenidium sp. infection in the literature, and it presented as an ocular infection. The human ocular infection was resistant to medical therapy and required a penetrating keratoplasty for cure. Additional reports of effective therapy are needed to guide management of this emerging pathogen. We present the first case of a cutaneous Lagenidium deciduum infection in a human patient, which is also the first documented case of a Lagenidium deciduum infection in an immunocompromised host of any species. Case presentation: An 18-year-old female with relapsed acute myeloid leukemia, awaiting a haploidentical stem cell transplant, presented with erythematous cutaneous lesions on her left hip and bilateral buttocks that enlarged and blackened over several days. About 1 week later, boil-like lesions appeared on her bilateral buttocks. The skin lesions were initially presumed to be bacterial in origin, so the patient was treated with clindamycin and cefepime with little improvement. Upon further investigation, fungal cultures and skin biopsies revealed aseptate hyphae, so the patient was switched to isavuconazole and amphotericin B due to concern for mucormycosis. Phenotypic characterization and DNA sequencing were performed by the Fungus Testing Laboratory, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, which identified the causal fungal organism as Lagenidium deciduum. All of her cutaneous lesions were surgically excised, and the patient was treated with micafungin, terbinafine, doxycycline, and azithromycin. Micafungin and terbinafine were continued until she achieved engraftment post-transplant. Conclusions: We report the first successful treatment of a human Lagenidium infection in an immunocompromised host through a combination of aggressive surgical excision and prolonged antifungal therapy during the prolonged neutropenia associated with allogeneic stem cell transplant. Prompt diagnosis and management may prevent disseminated oomycosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number515
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2024


  • Lagenidiosis
  • Lagenidium deciduum
  • Oomycosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases


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