Cellulitis is a skin infection, most commonly caused by Group A Streptococcus or Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (aka MRSA). It occurs by the skin surface being cut open from scratching, a bite, a puncture, or a rash. For this reason, many medical professionals tell patients to never scratch your skin, especially with nails. The nails hold a variable number of bacteria.
The most common symptoms of cellulitis are:
- Redness or erythema of the skin
- Warm skin
- Pain or tenderness
- Swelling or edema
- Pus or an abscess
- Body aches/fatigue
Most commonly cellulitis occurs on the extremities as in the arms or legs. Otherwise cellulitis can be noted on the abdomen, face, mouth, or around the anus. Obesity and diabetes may complicate the cellulitis or cause recurrence.
Cellulitis treatment may be treated with just antibiotics, however depending on if there is an abscess, sometimes drainage may also be necessary. A consultation with a healthcare provider is very important as cellulitis can spread and get worse very quickly. The infection from cellulitis can spread to the bloodstream leading to sepsis or possibly gangrene and loss of a limb, especially in diabetics. Please consult with a healthcare provider today to get an evaluation and determine the best treatment for you.