Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

About Impetigo

Impetigo is quite common but extremely contagious bacterial infection caused by the Staph aureus bacterium. This disease is characterized by sores on the surface of the skin generally in the hands and legs. At times, other areas of the body can also be affected depending on the severity of the disease and how much the disease has spread.

Impetigo affects infants and young children in most cases; however due to its contagiousness even adults can get affected after coming in contact with an infected individual or child. Impetigo is not a serious condition; however, if left untreated it may lead to many complications.

Impetigo occurs in about 15% of population affected with skin disorders in the United States. The infection starts after the bacteria infiltrates the body through small cuts and bruises which a child can incur while playing.

At times, a child or an adult with a perfectly healthy skin can also get Impetigo of which the reason is unknown but it is defined as primary impetigo. As impetigo is primarily a benign disease, it is a valid question to ask as to whether it can go away on its own. This article highlights this question and answers it in brief.

Can Impetigo Go Away On Its Own?

Impetigo generally goes way on its own within a couple to a maximum of four weeks after the onset of symptoms without any specific treatment. However, the likelihood of the infection to other parts of the body and even being transmitted to other individuals is extremely high without treatment of this condition.

Antibiotics are the frontline treatment of impetigo as it hastens the healing process and also prevents the infection from spreading to other parts of the body. For mild cases of impetigo, the physician will prescribe topical antibiotics which can be applied directly on the infected sores caused by the disease.

However, for severe cases a prolonged course of oral antibiotics spreading for duration of a week to a fortnight will be prescribed to prevent the spread of infection and speed up the healing process post the onset of symptoms of impetigo.

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Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: February 20, 2019

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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