Erysipelas (erysipelas) - causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment


  1. Erysipelas, erysipelas - what is it?
  2. Local manifestations of erysipelas
  3. How are varicose veins and erysipelas (erysipelas) associated
  4. Diagnosis and treatment of erysipelas (erysipelas)
  5. Frequently asked questions from our patients on the Internet

Erysipelas, erysipelas - what is it?

Erysipelas, erysipelas is an acute infectious disease characterized by damage to the upper layers of the skin, subcutaneous tissue and superficial lymphatic vessels, caused by pyogenic streptococci. The main clinical sign of the disease are characteristic foci of redness, which gave the name to the pathology, ἐρυσίπελας (Greek) - "red skin" with local hyperthermia. Another characteristic symptom is severe intoxication (chills, fever up to 39-40 degrees, weakness, nausea, vomiting).

Erysipelas (erysipelas) on the lower limb

A characteristic picture of erysipelas (erysipelas) on the leg

Any wound or scratch can serve as the entrance gate to infection and the onset of the disease. The incubation period is 3-5 days. The onset of the disease is characterized by symptoms of general intoxication. Local symptoms appear 10-20 hours after the onset of the disease. There is a feeling of discomfort, itching, tightening of the skin. After several hours, erythema characteristic of the disease develops. The spots of hyperemia have clear contours, in appearance they are often compared with the tongues of flame, a geographical map. The lesion sites have a fever, painful on palpation.

Local manifestations of erysipelas

According to local manifestations, erysipelas is classified into:

  1. Erythematous - characterized by redness and edema, the affected area has a clear line of demarcation from healthy tissue.
  2. Erythematous-bullous - blisters filled with transparent contents appear on the background of erythema
  3. Erythematous-hemorrhagic - differs from hemorrhagic by the presence of punctate hemorrhages.
  4. Bullous hemorrhagic - characterized by the presence of blisters and hemorrhages.

Erysipelas can affect the skin of any localization, but the areas on the face and lower legs are more often affected.

How are varicose veins and erysipelas (erysipelas) associated

Varicose disease, a pathology characterized by a violation of the venous outflow of the lower extremities. Due to the peculiarities of blood supply, trophic disorders in chronic venous insufficiency (an integral companion of varicose veins) occur in the lower third of the leg. Thus, the incidence of erysipelas in the lower leg increases sharply with CVI. And patients with a trophic ulcer are most susceptible to infection.

The following patterns are available:

  1. The likelihood of developing erysipelas is the higher, the more advanced the stage of varicose veins is (i.e., in patients with C1 it will be minimal, and with C6 it will be maximal).
  2. In patients with varicose veins, erysipelas often have a recurrent nature.
  3. Each case of erysipelatous inflammation aggravates trophic disorders and thereby facilitates the transition of varicose veins to the next clinical stage (for example, C5 in C6).
  4. With erysipelas, lymphatic vessels are always damaged, which often leads to the development of lymphostasis and even elephantiasis (elephantiasis).

Diagnosis and treatment of erysipelas (erysipelas)

A typical clinical picture of erysipelas is rarely difficult to diagnose. Hemolytic streptococcus has remained sensitive to penicillins, nitrofurans, sulfonamides. Very good erysipelas can also be treated with local treatment (antiseptics, ultraviolet, etc.). Treatment of the most erysipelatous inflammation often does not cause complications. However, the trophic ulcer that has appeared against the background of chronic venous insufficiency is not so easy to cure. In this case, you should treat not only erysipelas, but also correct the reflux of the blood in the venous system. Typically, the fight against infection takes no more than 2-x weeks. During this period, it is necessary to use compression knitwear, bandages with solutions of antiseptics, antibiotics. After relieving the inflammation, it is necessary to eliminate the pathological discharge of blood through the superficial veins, preferably with minimal trauma. Modern endovascular methods have proven themselves in the treatment of varicose veins with trophic disorders. If pathological reflux is preserved in the venous system, a trophic ulcer or erysipelas will not recur for a long time.

Frequently asked questions from our patients on the Internet

How to cure erysipelas at home on your own? Marina asks from Petropavlovsk:

Dear Marina! You can cure a mug at home on your own, provided that you have a special medical education. Otherwise, treating erysipelas at home should be strictly under the supervision of a specialist. With competent and timely diagnosis, as a rule, the treatment of erysipelas is not difficult.

How is erysipelas transmitted from person to person? Natalia from Moscow is interested in:

Dear Natalia! Erysipelas infection is not contagious, that is, infection from a sick person occurs quite rarely. Erysipelas is transmitted from person to person, usually by contact.

What to do with erysipelas? Victoria asks from Chelyabinsk:

Dear Victoria! With erysipelas, it is necessary to consult a doctor for professional help. The doctor will explain in detail what to do and how to avoid complications.