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Could this be Kaposi sarcoma

Posted by worriedS

I wonder if you can help.   My partner was diagnosed with head and neck cancer in August 2008.   About 6 weeks after he finished 6 weeks of radio and cisplatin based chemo therapy (40mg/m squared x 5) he had a herpes eruption.   At the same time 5 red spots/rahses appeared on different parts of his body .   One on his neck (this was a recrurrence he had had one before in August 2008) that had spontaneously disappeared; one on his right hand side about where this trouserbelt line is.   One on his right forearm, one on his left buttock – pant line; and one behind his left knee.   They all appeared within about 24 hours of each other and the ones on his bottom and side were pink/red and very itchy.


He was seen by doctors and given some cream for the herpes. We also went to our sexual health clinic where we both tested negative for   HIV/AIDS. He was given some antivirals and his genital herpes disappeared immediately.   However,   6 months many of the other spots are still evident.   Although they have faded somewhat and turned browny purple, they are still evident, fairly flat with a slightly scabby/plaque like covering.   They have not grown and are all about 2-3cms max diameter. His GP said he was sure it was a fungus and thus my partner has not really worried about them, and given his cancer is reluctant to seek medical advice for anything at the moment. However, I am concerned as they have not resolved.  


I have recently learned that Kaposi sarcoma is transmitted by a herpes virus –not HIV and that some non HIV/AIDS patients succumb to the sarcoma when their immune systems are low.   I wonder, no matter how unlikely, whether it is at all possible that he has KS, given the fact that he had been treated with chemo and his t cell count was   little low at the time of the outbreak . He had a blood test at the time of the outbreak. Or am I just being paranoid?  


By the way he had a clean PET scan in Feb, but I don’t know whether PET scans are effective for diagnosing KS.   Any advice on what this might be would be most reassuring.



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