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What Is a Furunculosis?

Seek medical attention if furunculosis is accompanied by a high fever or intense pain.
A doctor should be consulted if furunculosis is causing a fever or pain.
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  • Written By: Jessica F. Black
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 17 November 2014
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Furunculosis is the reoccurring presence of pus-filled sores, known as boils, on the skin. The furunculosis infection is primarily caused by staphylococcus aureus, often referred to as a staph germ, and there are countless people who are carriers of the germ. There are a number of ways to contract furunculosis, but there are also many treatments. Most people are susceptible to boils, but they occur more frequently in patients with immune system disorders.

The first signs of furunculosis are easy to recognize because it begins with a large reddish lump on the surface of the skin and shortly after a white or yellow center will appear as the boil fills with pus. Skin around the boil is often tender and becomes painful as the boil continues to fill with bacteria. There are a few home remedies that can ease the pain. Using warm compresses is common because the heat relieves the pain and also draws the pus closer to the surface, which may lead to bacterial drainage. The main goal of treatment is to drain the boil and begin the healing process.

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Boils are extremely contagious, and precautions should be taken in caring for the infected area. Clothing, bathing, and other household items should not be shared while someone has a bacterial infection. The use of anti-bacterial products, such as cleaning products and hand soaps, should be used continuously when handling furunculosis. There are some cases in which a doctor should be consulted, especially if the person with furunculosis is experiencing a high fever, the boil multiplies or increases dangerously in size, or if he or she is suffering from excruciating pain.

A physician may choose to lance the boil and extract the bacteria. A topical medication and oral antibiotic can also be prescribed to prevent further infection. One major concern is the further spreading of furunculosis, which can be more difficult to suppress. The continuation of pain or any worrisome health conditions associated with a boil should result in immediate professional consultation.

Aside from immune deficiency disorders, there are other groups that are apt to contracting furuncolosis. People in living arrangements that share small quarters and facilities with others, athletic team members that share equipment, people with other skin conditions that cause open wounds allowing bacteria to infiltrate the system, and people with poor nutritional habits are highly prone to catching bacterial infections. The surfaces of the body that are most commonly infected are areas that are sweaty and/or covered with hair. The armpits, groin, buttocks, neck, and thigh area are usually the most affected.

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