Pediatric leukemia cutis: A case series

Elena Corina Andriescu, Carrie C. Coughlin, Carol E. Cheng, Vimal H. Prajapati, Jennifer T. Huang, Birgitta A. Schmidt, Barbara A. Degar, Richard Aplenc, Vinodh Pillai, Albert C. Yan, Marilyn G. Liang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Background: Pediatric leukemia cutis (LC) is often difficult to diagnose due to similarity in appearance to other dermatologic diseases. Several case reports and smaller case series have been published in the medical literature, but studies on larger cohorts of children with LC are lacking. Objective: This study aimed to better characterize the clinical features, course, and prognosis of LC in the pediatric population. Methods: We performed a retrospective case series of 31 patients diagnosed with LC at Boston Children's Hospital and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Results: The number and morphology of LC lesions varied among patients, with the head and lower extremities being the most common sites of involvement. Leukemia cutis presented concomitantly with systemic leukemia in the majority of cases. Most cases of LC arose during initial leukemia episodes, rather than with relapsed leukemia. Acute myeloid leukemia was the subtype most frequently associated with LC, followed by acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Diagnosis altered treatment timing and therapeutic decisions. Conclusion: Children most often present concomitantly with LC and systemic leukemia. Since the morphology and distribution of LC varies, physicians must maintain a high index of suspicion for this diagnosis, as the presence of LC may change the management of systemic leukemia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)658-663
Number of pages6
JournalPediatric Dermatology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019


  • acute lymphoblastic leukemia
  • acute myeloid leukemia
  • aleukemic leukemia cutis
  • pediatric leukemia cutis


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