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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Impetigo
      Category : Health Centers > Infections (Infectious Diseases)


Overview, Causes, & Risk Factors | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

Impetigo is a bacterial infection on the surface of the skin, characterized by honey-colored crusts and mild sores.

What is going on in the body?

Staphylococcal and streptococcal organisms are common on the skin. Warm temperatures, high humidity, and an existing skin disease can lead to overgrowth, or rapid multiplication of these organisms. This overgrowth infects the skin surface and creates the skin lesions of impetigo.

What are the causes and risks of the infection?

Impetigo is a bacterial infection caused by streptococcal or staphylococcal organisms. Scratches, cuts, or skin diseases such as eczema increase a person's risk of infection from impetigo. Impetigo can occur in people of all ages, but it is most common in children. Chronic health problems, malnutrition, or poor hygiene can cause an adult to be susceptible to the disease.

Some people may carry a common bacteria in their nasal passages and be able to spread the disease to others, although they do not have symptoms themselves.


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Impetigo: Symptoms & Signs

Author: Lynn West, MD
Reviewer: Barbara Mallari, RN, BSN, PHN
Date Reviewed: 07/27/01

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