Bacterial skin infections: management of common streptococcal and stapylococcal lesions

J A Witkowski, L C Parish
Postgraduate Medicine 1982, 72 (4): 166-8, 171-3, 176-8 passim
Skin infection occurs in any age-group, sex, and race but is particularly common in children. It is usually minor, but may indicate underlying systemic disease or may lead to systemic infection. Streptococci and staphylococci are common causes. Group A beta-hemolytic streptococci account for the majority of streptococcal infections in man. Infection most often involves the lower extremities and produces spreading erythema and necrosis but little purulence. Staphylococcal infections most commonly involve the face, the hair follicles and eccrine sweat ducts being the initial sites. Lesions appear as bullae and pustules with a narrow rim of erythema. Intense cellulitis surrounding the lesions usually points to a virulent, penicillin-resistant strain of Staphylococcus. Treatment of both types of infection consists of cleansing with antibacterial agents, removal of crusts, application of warm compresses, and use of topical or systemic antibiotics, depending on the severity of the infection and the type of pyoderma involved.


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