OBJECTIVE: To describe a group of patients with Kawasaki disease who had cervical lymphadenopathy as their dominant initial presentations. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of 14 children who were admitted to Chang-Gung Children's Hospital between May 1996 and July 1998 with the initial impression of cervical lymphadenitis, cellulitis, and/or deep neck infection but for which a diagnosis of Kawasaki disease was established later. RESULTS: Five (35.7%) patients were less than 5 months of age, and 8 (57.1%) patients were more than 53 months of age. The mean duration for establishing a diagnosis of Kawasaki disease from the onset of illness was 8.2 (6 to 20) days. Initially, empiric antibiotics were prescribed in each case with unsatisfactory response. Intravenous immune gamma globulin (2 g/kg) was administered in 13 patients. Three (21.4%) patients developed coronary artery lesions. CONCLUSION: If a child less than 6 months or more than 4 years of age has a fever and an enlarged cervical lymph node and is unresponsive to empiric antibiotics, Kawasaki disease should be considered.
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