Cellulitis (skin infection)

Skin | Dermatology | Cellulitis (skin infection) (Disease)


Cellulitis is a condition that occurs when connective tissue inflames, locally or in a diffuse way. This is accompanied with grave inflammation of some layers of the skin called derma and subcutaneous layer.

Symptoms of cellulitis include: pain or tenderness in the affected area; skin redness or inflammation that gets bigger as the infection spreads; skin sore or rash that starts suddenly, and grows quickly in the first 24 hours; tight, glossy, stretched appearance of the skin; warm skin in the area of redness. If there’s an infection the signs are: chills or shaking, fatigue, general ill feeling, muscle aches and pains; warm skin and sweating and fever. Other symptoms that can occur with this disease: hair loss at the site of infection; joint stiffness caused by swelling of the tissue over the joint; nausea and vomiting.

Causes and Risk factors

Cellulitis can be caused by the flora of a normal skin or by some exogenous bacteria, and often occurs where the skin has previously been broken: cracks in the skin, cuts, blisters, burns, insect bites, surgical wounds, intravenous drug injection or sites of intravenous catheter insertion.

Higher risk for cellulitis include: insect or spider bite, blistering, animal bite, tattoos, pruritic skin rash, recent surgery, athletes foot, dry skin, eczema, injecting drugs, pregnancy, diabetes and obesity, burns and boils. Cellulitis is usually more severe in people with reduced immune response, such as those with diabetes mellitus or an immunodeficiency disorders.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis involves physical exam and blood culture to see if there is an infection. Treatment consists of resting the affected area, cutting away dead tissue, and antibiotics. ...