Erysipelas, a bacterial skin infection, is characterized by red, swollen, warm and/or painful patches on the skin's surface, often accompanied by fever and chills. It can also appear as lesions with raised borders that most frequently appear on the face or legs, or as sores on the cheeks and bridge of the nose. It is usually caused by the Streptococcus bacteria and occurs in both adults and children. This infection typically occurs when bacteria enter the skin through a break or crack.

Erysipelas requires prompt medical treatment. Our trusted Brentwood Dermatology providers specialize in erysipelas management, offering advanced solutions to alleviate symptoms and prevent complications. If you suspect erysipelas, schedule an appointment at Brentwood Dermatology for a thorough evaluation and tailored treatment plan to restore your skin health.

What are the Symptoms of Erysipelas?

  • Fiery red rash on the face and legs.
  • Swelling and warmth in the affected area.
  • Intense pain associated with the rash.
  • Well-defined, raised border of the affected skin.
  • Rapid progression of the rash.
  • Fever and chills.
  • Tenderness and a feeling of tightness in the affected skin.

Causes of Erysipelas

  • Bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes, also known as group A Streptococcus. This bacterium enters the body through breaks or cracks in the skin, or skin conditions like eczema or dermatitis.
  • Skin injuries, surgical wounds, or chronic skin conditions that compromise the skin's integrity.
  • Poor circulation, often associated with conditions like diabetes or venous insufficiency.
  • Lifestyle factors such as intravenous drug use, or obesity may further elevate the risk.

How to Prevent Erysipelas

Preventing erysipelas involves adopting measures to minimize the risk of skin infections, particularly for individuals with underlying conditions or predispositions. Maintaining good skin hygiene, practicing wound care, and managing underlying skin conditions are good ways to prevent erysipelas.

If you notice any signs of skin infection, especially a rapidly spreading rash, fever, or pain, we recommended scheduling an appointment with our dermatology providers to have them assess you and provide an individualized treatment plan.

Erysipelas FAQs

While erysipelas is usually responsive to treatment, there is a risk of recurrence, especially in individuals with predisposing factors. Preventive measures may include identifying and managing underlying conditions and practicing good skin hygiene.

If you suspect erysipelas or experience symptoms such as a rapidly spreading red rash, pain, fever, or chills, it's essential to seek prompt medical attention. Early diagnosis and treatment are crucial for a favorable outcome.

Diagnosis is often based on clinical examination by your dermatologist. In some cases, a skin culture may be performed to identify the causative bacteria.

With appropriate antibiotic treatment, symptoms of erysipelas often begin to improve within a few days. However, it's crucial to complete the full course of antibiotics as prescribed by a healthcare professional to ensure the infection is fully eradicated.

Erysipelas Treatment

Erysipelas demands prompt medical attention. You should reach out to your dermatologist at the earliest indication of infection. Typically, antibiotics are prescribed to effectively combat the bacterial infection.

Seeking dermatologic care quickly is essential to an accurate diagnosis. Your dermatologist can provide expert care and ensure you are on the path to healthy skin and confidence again.