Cellulitis: All You Need to Know
Cellulitis is a skin infection that affects millions of people worldwide. According to statistics, it accounts for about 14% of all skin infections and affects around 200 out of every 100,000 individuals every year. The condition is more common in those with weakened immune systems.
In the United States alone, over 14.5 million people are diagnosed with cellulitis every year. The incidence rate of cellulitis is higher in individuals who have weakened immune systems due to underlying medical conditions such as diabetes or HIV/AIDS. Overweight individuals are more likely to develop cellulitis compared to those with a healthy weight.
What is Cellulitis?
Cellulitis – as its name suggests is “infection of cells” or skin cells. It is caused by bacteria that can occur anywhere on the body. It typically affects the deeper layers of the skin and subcutaneous tissues. The condition is characterized by redness, swelling, warmth, and pain in the affected area. It can affect people of any age or gender but is more common in older adults or those with compromised immune systems. (1)
The most common cause is group A Streptococcus bacteria or Staphylococcus aureus. It enters the body through a skin break – such as a cut, scrape, insect bite or surgical incision. People with diabetes or circulation problems are at higher risk for developing cellulitis. In some cases, cellulitis can lead to serious complications like sepsis if left untreated so it’s essential to seek medical attention if you suspect you have this condition.