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Acute Lymphangitis






Acute lymphangitis is an inflammatory process involving the subcutaneous lymphatic channels. It is due most often to group A streptococcus (GAS) but occasionally may be caused by Staphylococcus aureus; rarely, soft tissue infections with other organisms, such as Pasteurella multocida herpes simplex virus may be associated with acute lymphangitis.


Causes:

* Acute lymphangitis is most often caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pyogenes. This potentially dangerous bacterium also causes strep throat, infections of the heart, spinal cord, and lungs.

*Staphylococci bacteria may also cause lymphangitis.

* In immunocompromised hosts, gram-negative rods, gram-negative bacilli, and fungi may cause cellulitis and resultant lymphangitis.

* Children with diabetes, immunodeficiency, varicella, chronic steroid use, or other systemic illnesses have increased risk of developing serious or rapidly spreading lymphangitis.


Symptoms:

* fever
* chills
* a rapid heart rate
* a headache
* Rash
* Red blotchy skin
* Itching of the affected area
* Discoloration
* Increase of swelling and/or temperature of the skin
* Heavy sensation in the limb (more so than usual)
* Pain
* In many cases a sudden onset of high fever and chills

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