Coast Dermatology Medical Associates

Learn more about Impetigo and how Coast Dermatology Medical Associates can help.
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About Impetigo

What is It?

Impetigo is a contagious skin infection caused by bacteria. It develops when the bacteria, usually staph or strep, invade injured skin. A scrape on your skin is often enough to get infected. The bacteria may also get in through a cut, insect bite, or anything else that damages the skin. Once inside, the bacteria cause an infection in the top layers of the skin. Sometimes, the bacteria invade uninjured skin and cause impetigo.
What you see and feel differs with the type of impetigo.

There are several types of Impetigo, non-bullous, bulls and ecthyma. Non-bullous is the most common type. It starts with one or more sores, which are often itchy, the sores quickly burst, and the skin can be red or raw where the sores have broken open. Your glands near the sores may feel swollen and crusts, usually honey-colored, form. The skin heals without scarring, unless scratching cuts deep into the skin
The infection can spread to other areas of the body, where you’ll see this process begin all over again. This is one reason treatment is so important.

Bullous impetigo causes fluid-filled blisters, but without redness on the surrounding skin. When a person has bullous impetigo, you’ll see it progress as blisters that contain a cloudy or yellow fluid. The blisters become limp and transparent and then break open. A crusty sore can form where the blisters have broken open.
Ecthyma can develop when impetigo goes untreated because it goes deeper into the skin.
The difference is the blisters are painful and can turn into open sores that are deep. Thick crusts develop, often with redness on the surrounding skin
Because the infection goes deeper into the skin, you may see scars once the skin heals.

If notice any of these signs on your child’s skin (or your own skin), you should call your dermatologist and make an appointment for treatment.
All types of impetigo are very contagious. Treatment can help clear the infection and prevent the infection from spreading to others.
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About Impetigo

What Causes It?

Impetigo is a common skin infection, especially in children. It is caused by a bacteria. Children aged 2 to 5 years old are most likely to get this extremely contagious skin infection. However, anyone can get impetigo. Older children and adults get it and often catch impetigo from an infected child. Some athletes have a higher risk of catching it, because of the skin-to-skin contact in sports like wrestling and football. The bacteria that cause impetigo thrive in warm, humid places, so swimmers also have an increased risk.

Most people develop it when the bacteria, usually staph or strep, invade injured skin. The bacteria can get in through a cut, an insect bite, or anything else that damages the skin. Once inside, the bacteria cause an infection in the top layers of the skin.

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About Impetigo

Common Treatments

Our team of dermatologists recommend treating impetigo, especially because it is highly contagious. Treatment will depend on your doctor and also the type of impetigo that you have. Most are easily treatable with topical antibiotics.Without treatment, impetigo often clears on its own in two to four weeks. During this time, there is a greater risk of developing complications. You may see new blisters and sores.
It’s also possible for the infection to go deeper into the skin if you don’t treat. If this happens, you can develop ecthyma. This infection goes deeper into the skin than impetigo. As the skin heals from ecthyma, scars can form. Ecthyma is more common in children, the elderly, and people who have diabetes. Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent complications and help you feel better faster.

Schedule an appointment today using our easy online platform, or call us so that we can help you start feeling better.

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Our Approach & Expertise

We understand how impetigo can be alarming. As your experienced community skin experts, we have the knowledge to help you manage deal with this contagious infection. Contact us if you have a concern that you want to have looked at.

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