Overview of erysipelas
Erysipelas, otherwise called Saint Anthony’s fire, is a generally regular bacterial contamination of the surface layer of the skin (upper dermis), stretching out into the shallow lymph vessels inside the skin, and is characterized by a clear elevation, well-defined, gentle, and bright. A red rash, usually on the face or legs, but can occur anywhere on the skin. It is a form of cellulitis and it can be dangerous.
It is typically brought about by the microscopic organisms Streptococcus pyogenes, otherwise called bunch A β-hemolytic streptococci, through an entry point in the skin, for example, scratches or a bug bite. It is more superficial than cellulitis and is usually more elevated and demarcated. The term is from Greek ἐρυσίπελας (erysípelas), which means “red skin.”
In creatures, It is an illness brought about by disease with the bacterium Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae. The disease that affects animals is called diamond cutaneous disease, which occurs especially in pigs. The heart valves and skin are affected. Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae can likewise contaminate people, yet for this situation, the disease is known as erysipelas.
What are the symptoms of erysipelas?
- Feeling generally unwell
- A red, swollen, and painful skin area with a raised edge
- Lists on the affected area
- Swollen glands
When erysipelas affects the face, the swollen area usually includes the nose and cheeks.
What causes erysipelas?
This can happen when bunch A streptococcus microscopic organisms infiltrate the external boundary of your skin. These bacteria naturally live on your skin and other surfaces without causing any harm. However, it can get into your skin through a wound or ulcer and cause infection. Conditions that cause cracked skin, such as athlete’s foot and eczema, can sometimes lead to erysipelas. Erysipelas may also occur when bacteria spread into the nasal passages after an infection of the nose and throat.
Other causes of erysipelas include:
- Ulcers in the skin
- Insect bites
- Certain skin diseases, such as psoriasis
- Swollen legs due to health problems such as heart failure and diabetes
- Injecting illegal drugs, such as heroin
How is erysipelas diagnosed?
Erysipelas is usually diagnosed by the characteristic rash. The differential of erysipelas is similar to simulating cellulitis. There is often a history of related injury. Tests may reveal:
- Increase the number of white cells
- Increased C-reactive protein
- Positive blood culture defining the organism.
Magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography are performed in deep infection. For skin biopsy results, see Pathology of Erysipelas.
Treatment and recovery
Erysipelas is curable. It is important to start treatment as soon as possible to reduce the chance of further complications. Antibiotics treat erysipelas. The exact type will depend on the type of germ causing the problem, but it most often contains penicillin.
It is therefore imperative that anyone who is allergic to penicillin informs their doctor before starting treatment so that they can prescribe other medicines, such as erythromycin or cephalexin. People with erysipelas usually take antibiotics by mouth for 7 to 14 days. In more severe cases, medications are placed directly into the skin via a drip. There are also other ways to help reduce pain and discomfort and speed up the healing process, such as:
- Keep the affected area elevated, while ensuring movement to try to prevent clotting
- Cooling pads to be placed on the skin
- Emotions to prevent the skin from drying out and cracking
- Anti-inflammatory painkillers, such as ibuprofen
- Compression stockings as soon as the infection clears up
- Treat any cracked skin, often with a prescription cream that is applied directly
Erysipelas recur in up to a third of patients due to:
- Persistent risk factors
- Lymphatic damage (thus impaired drainage of toxins).
Complications are rare but may include:
- Chronic leg swelling
- Infections far from the site of erysipelas
- Infectious endocarditis (heart valves)
- Septic arthritis
- Glomerulonephritis after streptococcus (a kidney condition that affects children)
- Cavernous sinus thrombosis (dangerous blood clots that can spread to the brain)
- Streptococcus toxic shock syndrome (rare).
Prevention and outlook
Erysipelas is curable. Signs of fever and illness associated with erysipelas often disappear within a few days of starting treatment, although the skin infection may take weeks to clear. There is no scarring. About a third of those who receive treatment for erysipelas develop the condition again. When this happens, a long-term course of therapy may be prescribed to treat him.
A person needs to see their doctor as soon as possible if they have any concerns about recurring attacks. If other conditions contributed to the attack, such as eczema, athlete’s foot, or diabetes, then treating these conditions properly can help prevent further outbreaks of erysipelas. It can also help treat cracked skin quickly. Likewise, if excess weight or poor circulation contributes to the development of an infection, changing lifestyle and diet can often help reduce the chances of erysipelas returning.