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Cervical necrotizing fasciitis (CNF) is an uncommon infection of the subcutaneous soft tissue and fascia. If proper treatment is delayed, the infection may cause extensive necrosis of overlying skin, extend to deeper planes and produce severe systemic ;however, the onset is often insidious in the form of nonspecific regional neck swelling, erythema and fever, rendering clinical distinction from more benign inflamatory conditions of the neck, such as cellulitis, may be impossible at an early stage. We present a series of 3 patients with CNF, each of whom had diferent clinical courses. One patient, with significant cormobidity at the time of presentation, died of CNF. (Korean J Otolaryngol 2002;45:416-21)