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Case 4: Varicella Zoster Virus

You answered:

C The preferred therapy for dermatomal herpes zoster in HIV-infected patients consists of oral valganciclovir (Valcyte).

This answer is incorrect. In HIV-infected patients, therapy for localized herpes zoster consists of oral therapy with acyclovir (Zovirax), famciclovir (Famvir), or valacyclovir (Valtrex). Neither intravenous ganciclovir (Valcyte) nor oral valganciclovir (Valcyte) are recommended to treat herpes zoster.

A The Tzanck stain is diagnostic for VZV infection and it rules out other causes of vesicular skin lesions, such as herpes simplex virus infection.
B The preferred therapy for dermatomal herpes zoster in HIV-infected patients consists of acyclovir (Zovirax), valacyclovir (Valtrex), or famciclovir (Famvir).
D The incidence of herpes zoster in HIV-infected individuals is the same as age-matched HIV-negative persons.

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