This is an infection of the deeper parts of the skin involving the deeper dermis as well as the subcutaneous tissues. This is most commonly caused by streptococcus but occasionally staph aureus. In children it is most commonly caused by staph aureus although H Influenza may also be causal.
In the healthy individual, cellulitis requires a break in the skin. Alcoholism, diabetes, poor circulation as well as fungal infections on the feet allowing bacteria to enter may be factors that allow entry. There are usually fevers and chills. The skin is red, swollen and tender. This is not well defined as in Erysipelas which is more superficial. When this is severe there may be blistering as well as some pustules present. It may be associated with a red line extending along the lymph channels and there may be tenderness and swelling of the lymph nodes. A rare complication will include inflammation in the kidneys called acute glomeruli nephritis.
In all cases systemic antibiotics will be required. Most of the time oral antibiotics are required even for the milder cases.
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