Erysipeloid is a bacterial infection that affects your skin. It's caused by Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae, a widespread bacteria that is spread by animals and can be found in soil, food, or water. Here are five things you need to know about erysipeloid.
What are the symptoms of erysipeloid?
If you have this infection, you will notice a purplish-red rash with well-defined borders. The rash tends to be irregularly shaped and may be painful and swollen. The rash is usually confined to the skin on the hands and the fingers, but the infection can spread to more distant areas of your body as well. About 10% of patients develop a fever in addition to the rash.
How do you acquire this infection?
You can get this infection if the bacteria get inside abrasions in your skin. Handling meat products such as fish, meat, or poultry is a common way this happens. Fishmongers, leather workers, and other people whose jobs bring them into contact with animal products may become infected.
While this infection is mostly an occupational disease, people who do not work with animals or animal products are also at risk. You may acquire the disease while cutting or handling infected meat products in your home kitchen; dog bites have also been linked to the spread of the bacteria.
How serious is it?
Erysipeloid is usually a self-limited infection, which means that it will usually go away on its own without treatment. Sometimes, the infection can spread from your skin to other parts of your body, causing systemic erysipeloid. This is more serious and can lead to complications like neurological damage, heart disease, or joint disease.
How do dermatologists treat it?
Even though erysipeloid will usually go away on its own, your dermatologist will recommend treating it to avoid the risk of the infection spreading and causing systemic erysipeloid. Your dermatologist will give you a prescription for antibiotics, such as penicillin or ciprofloxacin. The antibiotics will kill the bacteria and prevent it from spreading.
Once you're cured, you won't be immune to the bacteria, so you may get the same infection again in the future. To avoid this, your dermatologist may recommend taking precautions like wearing gloves while you cut or handle meat and disinfecting surfaces after meat comes in contact with them.
If you think you have erysipeloid, see dermatologist right away. This infection usually isn't serious, but to be safe, you need to be treated. For more information, contact a company like Advanced Dermatology Care.Share