Cellulitis and erysipelas epidemiology and etiology

Cellulitis and erysipelas are bacterial infections involving the skin. OG Cellulitis is an infection of the dermis and subcutaneous tissue, whereas erysipelas is a more superficial infection of the upper dermis and superficial lymphatics. Although both can occur on any part of the body, about 90% of infections involve the leg.12, 3 These infections develop after a break in skin integrity, resulting from trauma, surgery, ulceration, burns, tinea infection, or other skin disorder. However, they may occur after an inapparent break in the skin, and the skin may appear previously intact. In rare cases, cellulitis develops from blood-borne or contiguous spread of pathogens.1,14

Etiologic microorganisms vary according to the area involved, host factors, and exposures. Erysipelas is generally caused by fi-hemolytic streptococci, mainly GAS, and rarely by S. aureus. The predominant pathogens associated with cellulitis are

S. aureus, including methicillin-resistant strains, and fi-hemolytic streptococci. Persons who are immunocompromised, have diabetes or vascular insufficiency, or use injection drugs are at risk for polymicrobial cellulitis

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