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Information for Parents

Abscess in Skin and Subcutaneous Tissues in Children

  • What is this disease?

    • An abscess is a painful collection of pus that is caused by a bacterial infection. Abscesses may be found in any area of the body, but most abscesses presenting for urgent attention are found on the extremities, buttocks,  breast, perianal area (the area around the anus), neck or from a hair follicle.

  • How it is diagnosed?

    • It is diagnosed by clinical examination and for deep abscesses, sometimes USG is needed.

  • How it is treated?

    • Abscesses can be treated with antibiotics and either a drainage procedure, or surgery, to remove the pus.

  • When it should be operated?

    • Large abscess, having fluctuation and clinical signs like fever needs surgical drainage.

  • Are there other alternative methods of treatment?

    • Small abscess can be treated by antibiotics alone. However, in most cases, antibiotics alone will not be enough to clear a skin abscess.

  • What all I need to know before my child surgery?

    • Read “All you need to know before your child's surgery” information booklet in website.

  • How is the surgery done?

    • Abscess drainage involves operation under anaesthetic , either local (Child will be awake, but the area of the abscess will be numb), or a general anaestheic (Child  will be asleep). The anaesthetic that is used will depend on the size and severity of abscess.The  surgeon will make an incision (cut) in the abscess to allow all of the pus to drain out and  may also take a sample of pus for testing in order to confirm  which bacteria caused the infection. All loculi inside abscess cavity will be  broken and the cavity is left with an antiseptic dressing placed inside , to keep it open. Once the procedure is complete, the wound should heal in two-three weeks. It may leave a small scar

  • Remarks

    • For more details of surgery, contact your surgeon

  • Related Photographs and videos

    • Few photographs of steps done by me  is given here for learning purposes

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