About 2 to 3 in every 100 people in the United States suffer from cellulitis every year. It’s a skin infection that can affect the soft tissues underneath. Some of the most common cellulitis symptoms include swelling, feeling of ‘warmth’ on the affected site, redness, pain or tenderness on the affected area, and leaking of pus or clear liquid.
Lymphedema and Cellulitis
There are several possible causes of cellulitis. It can be a complication of lymphedema, a condition brought by obstructed flow of the lymphatic fluid. Initially, a person would feel pain on the lymphedema site. The characteristic of pain is often described as “flu-like.” The discomfort is usually followed by sudden onset of redness or blotches on the affected area. The area will be warm to touch and the person may suffer from chills and high fever.
Managing Cellulitis Symptoms
Cellulitis symptoms need immediate attention. When they’re left unmanaged, they can lead to further enlargement and redness of the area, increased pain, and the spread of infection.
Below is a list of different ways of managing the cellulitis symptoms:
A person treated at home will usually be prescribed with antibiotics to be taken two to four times in a day for a week. Longer course of antibiotic may be needed if cellulitis symptoms don’t improve after the initial course of treatment.
Some of the most commonly prescribed antibiotics for cellulitis include amoxicillin, co-amoxiclav, clarithromycin, and flucloxacillin.
Resting the affected part on a pillow when sitting or lying down can help in reducing the swelling.
The use of compression garments can help in the prevention and treatment of cellulitis. It helps in the prevention as these therapeutic garments can improve the flow of the lymph and the blood. It also prevents further complications of cellulitis by preventing scarring of the tissues underneath.
When choosing compression garments to use for cellulitis or lymphedema (a possible cause of the skin infection), it’s important to choose a brand that provides high quality and comfortable compression garments.
Bioflect Therapy Garments have a wide range of compression garments that help in controlling and preventing complications of lymphedema. Unlike other therapeutic garments in the market, Bioflect makes sure that these garments are comfortable to wear which would help in increasing compliance.
When To Get Medical Advice
If you have cellulitis, you should contact your GP as soon as possible if:
your symptoms get worse after 48 hours
your symptoms haven't improved after a week
you develop additional symptoms, such as a high temperature (fever) or vomiting
Image: alan jones