What is the difference between erysipelas and cellulitis?

What is the difference between erysipelas and cellulitis?

Cellulitis is an infection of the deep dermis and subcutaneous tissue; erysipelas is more superficial, involving only the upper dermis and superficial lymphatics.

How do you Recognise erysipelas?


  1. swollen and shiny.
  2. redness.
  3. warm and tender to the touch.
  4. blisters in severe cases.
  5. sharp edges between the affected area and unaffected skin.
  6. red streaks above the affected area.
  7. can turn purple or black in severe cases.

How can you tell the difference between cellulitis?

Some common things physicians look for to diagnose cellulitis include red streaking around the area, which would mean the lymph vessels are inflamed, a condition more likely to be seen in cellulitis. Also, physicians may look for a wound or cut where bacteria could have entered the skin.

How is erysipelas and cellulitis diagnosed?

Doctors can usually tell whether an infection is erysipelas or cellulitis based on the typical symptoms and the appearance of the skin. Your medical history or recent injuries often help to diagnose the problem too. Further tests aren’t usually needed. It can sometimes help to test fluid from the wound for germs.

What layer of skin does erysipelas affect?

Erysipelas is a common bacterial infection of the skin. It affects the upper dermis (upper layer of the skin) and the lymphatic vessels within the skin.

Does erysipelas cause swelling?

Erysipelas affects the upper layers of the skin. The typical symptom is a painful and shiny light-red swelling of a quite clearly defined area of skin. Red streaks leading from that area may be a sign that the infection has started to spread along the lymph vessels too. In more severe cases, blisters may form as well.

Is cellulitis blanching or non blanching?

Cellulitis is a soft-tissue infection of the skin and subcutaneous tissue usually characterized by blanching erythema, swelling, pain or tenderness, and local warmth.

How are cellulitis and erysipelas diagnosed?

What is the reservoir for erysipelas?

Asymptomatic anal colonization with group A or G streptococci63 or vaginal carriage of group B streptococci64 may serve as reservoirs in individuals with relapsing erysipelas (or cellulitis).

Is cellulitis Gram negative or positive?

Gram-positive cocci such as Streptococcus spp and Staphylococcus aureus are thought to be the predominant cause of cellulitis. Positive blood cultures are found in less than 10% of cases.

What is meant by erysipelas?

Erysipelas is a bacterial skin infection involving the upper dermis that characteristically extends into the superficial cutaneous lymphatics. It is a tender, intensely erythematous, indurated plaque with a sharply demarcated border.