Skin and subcutaneous tissue bacterial infections caused by streptococcus pyogenes

Skin and Subcutaneous Tissue Bacterial Infections Caused by Streptococcus Pyogenes

Streptococcus pyogenes, also known as Group A Streptococcus (GAS), is a Gram-positive, non spore-forming, beta-hemolytic bacteria. It is considered one of the most common human pathogens, responsible for a variety of infections in humans, ranging from minor skin infections to life-threatening illnesses, such as necrotizing fasciitis.

One of the most common GAS infections is streptococcal pharyngitis, often referred to as “strep throat.” However, GAS can also cause a variety of skin and subcutaneous tissue infections. These include:

  • Cellulitis
  • Impetigo
  • Erysipelas
  • Necrotizing fasciitis
  • Lymphangitis
  • Myositis

Cellulitis is an infection of the subcutaneous tissue which is typically caused by GAS. It appears as a red, painful, and swollen area that feels warm to the touch. The infection can spread deeper into the body and cause more serious complications, such as sepsis and necrosis. Treatment usually consists of antibiotics along with topical application of warm compresses.

Impetigo is another common skin infection caused by GAS. It is most frequently seen in children and typically appears as red fluid-filled lesions on the face and extremities. These lesions can become crusted and pustular, and if not treated, can lead to systemic infections. Treatment consists of oral antibiotics and topical cleansing agents.

Erysipelas is another skin infection caused by GAS. It is often referred to as “strep rash” due to its characteristic reddish rash. Treatment consists of antibiotics, and if left untreated, can lead to serious complications, such as sepsis or meningitis.

Necrotizing fasciitis is a serious, life-threatening infection caused by GAS. It is a deep infective process that progresses rapidly and can cause tissue necrosis upon untreated course. It is also known as “trench foot” or “flesh-eating bacteria.” Treatment consists of IV antibiotics, surgical debridement, and supportive care.

Lymphangitis is an infection of the lymphatic vessels typically caused by GAS. It appears as red streaks resembling those seen in cellulitis and presents with painful and tender swelling. Treatment consists of antibiotics and supportive care such as wrapping or compression.

Myositis is an infection of the muscles caused by GAS. It appears as heat, redness, and swelling in the affected area, and can cause fever and chills. Treatment consists of antibiotics, hot compress, and supportive care.

GAS infections can be fatal if left untreated, so it is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Treatment typically consists of antibiotics as well as supportive care, depending on the severity of the infections. Although GAS infections can be very serious, they are generally easy to treat with prompt attention and appropriate antibiotic therapy.