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Impetigo - Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

Impetigo is skin infection. It produces blisters or sores on the face and hands. It is caused by bacterial infection and characterized by crusting skin lesions. Impetigo usually appears on the face and especially around a child's nose and mouth. It may follow other skin disorders.The skin normally has many types of bacteria on it, but intact skin is an effective barrier that keeps bacteria from entering and growing within the body. When there is a break in the skin, bacteria can enter the body and grow there, causing inflammation and infection. Breaks in the skin may occur with insect bites, animal bites, or human bites, or other injury or trauma to the skin. Impetigo may occur on skin where there is no visible break.

Two main types of bacteria cause impetigo: streptococcal and staphylococcal organisms. It commonly occurs when bacteria enter the skin through cuts or insect bites, it can also develop in skin that's perfectly healthy. Impetigo may follow a recent upper respiratory infection such as a cold or other viral infection. After infection, new lesions may be seen on the patient with no apparent break in the skin. Frequently, however, upon close examination, these lesions will demonstrate some underlying physical damage.

Impetigo is an infection caused by group. A beta-hemolytic streptococci (GABHS) or S aureus. Remnants of ruptured bullae are seen at the time of presentation. Separation of the epidermis is due to an exotoxin produced by staphylococci, which is the pathologic organism present in cases of bullous impetigo. In lesions of this type, isolation of methicillin-resistant S aureus has been as high as 20%. The organisms are thought to enter through damaged skin and are transmitted through direct contact.

Causes of Impetigo

Impetigo that is caused by staphylococcus aureus triggers larger fluid-containing blisters that appear clear, then cloudy. These blisters are more likely to stay intact longer on the skin without bursting. Common causes of Impetigo

  • Streptococcus( GABS).
  • Staphylococcus pyogenes.

Symptoms of Impetigo

Impetigo shows up as a rash that may occur anywhere on the body and commonly affects the face and other exposed areas of the body. Common Symptoms of Impetigo

  • Skin lesion
  • Itching blister:
  • Rash.
  • Lymphadenopathy.
  • Trauma.

Treatment of Impetigo

Common Treatment of Impetigo

  • Soak a clean cloth in a mixture of half a cup of white vinegar in a litre of tepid water. Apply the compress to moist areas for about ten minutes several times a day.
  • Oral antibiotics are recommended if the infection is extensive, proving slow to respond to topical antibiotics ( penicillin , flucloxacillin).The complete course should be taken, usually at least 7 days.
  • Avoid close contact with others.
  • Use separate towels and flannels.
  • Cut an infected child's nails short to prevent scratching.
  • Gently wash the affected areas with mild soap and running water and then cover lightly with gauze.
  • Change and launder clothes and linen daily.
  • Persons with impetigo or symptoms of GABS infections should seek medical care and if necessary begin antibiotic treatment as soon as possible to prevent spread to others.
  • If the sores are in areas you shave (men on their face; women on their legs), shave around the sores so you won't spread the infection further.






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Disclaimer : All information on is for educational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, please consult your doctor.