April 02, 2008
A 39-year-old woman complained of excruciating pain that radiated from a chronic lesion on the left upper lip to the entire left side of the face. She had AIDS (CD4+ cell count, 68/µL; HIV RNA level, greater than 750,000 copies/mL) but was not receiving antiretroviral therapy. The lesion first appeared as a blister, which ruptured after it was struck by a toy thrown by her son. It enlarged and became more painful despite antibiotic therapy and a 1-month course of valacyclovir. During this period, she had no fever. She used marijuana and alcohol for pain control.