Cellulitis is an infection of the skin and underlying tissues underneath the skin. It is caused by a bacterial infection often from Staphylococcus and or Streptococcus bacteria. It usually occurs in the lower part of the leg due to a crack, blister, break, or cut in the skin.
The symptoms are usually redness, swelling, tenderness of the leg and or possible fever.
It usually occurs in older adults due to the skin being more fragile. Dry skin and swelling of the legs is a common precursor due to this making a person want to itch the skin or possible blisters that occur. This often will cause a minor break in the skin and bacteria that are already on our skin called staphylococcus aureus a protective flora for our skin creep into the underlying tissues and cause an infection.
This condition requires immediate care from your physician and or from the Emergency room. The leg will need to be cleaned and antibiotics are usually needed to be prescribed to treat the infection.
You can reduce the risk of this condition by using a lotion called Aquaphor to help keep your skin from getting too dry. If the you already have cellulitis it needs to be cleansed from a Dr and you almost certainly will need antibiotics to kill the infection.
Also controlling the swelling in the legs is critical by following your Dr orders of possibly using compression socks, leg elevation, and possible use of a diuretic. Be sure and ask your Dr what level of compression would be appropriate for the compression socks. They can be bought over the counter.