Alternate Names : Abscess, Furuncle, Carbuncle, Boil
An abscess is a collection of pus in or on the skin.
What is going on in the body?
An abscess usually forms in response to a bacteria infection, with
Staphylococcus aureus organisms being the most common causes. However,
abscesses can also be a response to a foreign body under the skin. The body
responds to either the bacteria or the foreign body by sending white blood
cells to the area, which forms pus.
What are the causes and risks of the condition?
Abscesses are generally caused by an infection with
Staphylococcus aureus organisms. They may form in response to the
wounds or injuries to the skin, including surgery
a foreign body under the skin, such as a splinter
a sebaceous cyst,
which is an oil-filled sac under the skin
is inflammation of a hair follicle
furuncles, or boils
Risk factors for skin abscesses include the following:
disorder, in which the body's infection-fighting mechanisms are
impaired. People with
AIDS, for example, have a significant risk of skin abscess.
impaired circulation, such as
peripheral arterial disease, which limits blood flow to the legs
chronic use of steroids