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Impetigo - Know How It Can Be Treated!

MD - Dermatology , Venereology & Leprosy, MBBS, PLAB
Dermatologist, Hyderabad  •  16 years experience
Impetigo - Know How It Can Be Treated!

Impetigo is a skin disorder that is contagious in nature and primarily affects children; it is characterized by the appearance of red sores on the skin. The face, neck and the hands of a child are usually affected by this condition. This disorder tends to develop around the region where the diaper is worn by a child. It is caused by the bacteria; Staphylococcus Aureus and Streptococcus Pyogenes. The disorder is classified as:

  1. Bullous impetigo: It is a type of impetigo which is common among children below 2 years of age. The blisters initially appear on the body, legs and the arms.
  2. Impetigo Contagiosa: Another common form of impetigo, this is the most contagious of all the types. The symptoms show up as red sores around the mouth and the nose.
  3. Ecthyma: This is considered to be the most severe form of impetigo because it affects both the top and the lower layers of the skin. The blisters that form may later turn into ulcers or open sores.

Symptoms
In this disorder, red pus filled sores appear on the skin. Once they burst, they leave a yellow colored crust. The rashes will cause constant itching along with the appearance of swollen lymph nodes.

Causes

This condition occurs when the skin is infected by certain types of bacteria. This infection can occur in the following ways:

  1. Direct skin to skin contact
  2. Coming in contact with things that the affected person has had contact with
  3. Bites from certain insects and animals
  4. Skin injuries

The factors outlined below increase the risks of getting affected by this disorder:

  1. Being below 6 years of age increases the risks
  2. Certain skin conditions which have been irritating your skin
  3. Not following proper hygiene
  4. Being exposed to hot and humid climatic conditions
  5. Being diabetic

Treatments
The treatment for this disorder depends on how severe the symptoms are. If the symptoms are mild then simple hygiene procedures can help with the symptoms.

  1. At home treatments: For mild symptoms, clean the area thoroughly multiple times. After washing, pat dry the skin and apply an antibiotic ointment on the area.
  2. Antibiotics: If the at home treatments do not work then you will require medications. Antibiotic creams are prescribed that are applied on the skin. Oral antibiotics may also be prescribed for severe symptoms.

The disorder can be prevented by following proper hygiene procedures. Wash your hands with antibacterial soap, use clean toiletries and keeping your fingernails short are some steps you can take.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

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