The efficacy of treatment with triamcinolone acetonide in calcinosis cutis following extravasation of calcium gluconate: A preliminary study

Sung Ku Ahn, Kyun Tae Kim, Seung Hun Lee, Sang Min Hwang, Eung Ho Choi, Sooim Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)


Neonatal hypocalcemia is not an uncommon condition, especially in the premature neonate. It is effectively treated by intravenous administration of calcium gluconate. Complications of extravasation during intravenous infusion include localized calcification and occasionally necrosis. When this occurs, however, there is no specific mode of treatment except supportive management and skin graft. This experiment was designed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of treatment with triamcinolone acetonide in calcinosis cutis following extravasation of calcium gluconate. Initially, 2 cc of 10% calcium gluconate was injected subcutaneously into two rabbits at seven sites on the shaved skin of the back. Another two rabbits were injected at the same sites with 0.5 cc of triamcinolone acetonide (10 mg/dl) after injection of 2 cc of 10% calcium gluconate. As a control, 2 cc of normal saline was injected into another rabbit in the same manner. These five rabbits were observed over the next 7 weeks and underwent pathologic examination at various intervals (on days 1, 3, 8, 15, 30, 37, 45). In the 10% calcium gluconate injected rabbits, nodules and large ulcerated lesions developed after 15 days. Multiple, linear, ulcerative and indurated masses were noted on day 37. The lesions healed progressively with a decrease in ulceration, and after 2 months, the masses disappeared gradually. Histologically, on day 15 calcium deposits were seen in the walls of the arteries, veins, dermis, and muscle fibers and epidermal necrosis was seen at the injection sites. From day 37 discharge of calcium deposits began to take place by means of transepidermal elimination. After 2 months, the calcium and mucin deposition was observed focally in the dermis. In the rabbits injected with 10% calcium gluconate and triamcinolone acetonide, mild erythema and induration were seen after day 15 at the injection sites; this gradually disappeared. After 30 days the injection sites were normal in appearance. Histologically, at day 15 calcium deposition was seen in the upper dermis, but after 1 month the injection sites were histologically normal. We suggest that intralesional injection of triamcinolone acetonide for the treatment of calcinosis cutis following extravasation of calcium gluconate is effective, probably due to its antiinflammatory effect and its role in facilitating the resorption of calcium in the tissue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-109
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric Dermatology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Jan 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Dermatology

Cite this