Bacterial Skin Infections

INFECTIOUS Minute single-celled organisms of varied shape.  Non-pathogenic bacteria live on the skin and are harmless, helping keep skin healthy.  Pathogenic bacteria can cause disease. Streptococcus Bacteria Impetigo Appearance: Red, sore skin Blisters that burst forming crusts If untreated:  pus-filled ulcers with dark thick crust Can cause scarring Site: Nose, …

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Viral Skin Infections

INFECTIOUS Minute entities, too small even under microscope.  They are parasites, requiring living tissue to invade healthy cells and multiply within them.  Eventually the cell wall breaks down releasing new viral particles to attack more cells thus spreading the infection. Example of a virus (Herpes Simplex):  Herpes simplex or cold …

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Skin Infestations

INFECTIOUS Small parasites live and feed on the skin  Sarcoptes Scabiei/scabies/itch mites   Infestation of tiny parasites burrowing beneath the skin invading hair follicles feeding on tissue and fluid Appearance: Starts with tiny papules (spots) & wavy greyish lines (dirt enters burrows) Secondary bacterial infections may occur from scratching as …

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Fungal Skin Diseases

Microscopic parasitic plants that feed off waste products of skin.  Found on skin surface/deeper tissues, reproducing by simple cell division or spores. INFECTIOUS  Tinea pedis/athlete’s foot   Common fungal foot infection Appearance: Small blisters that later burst Skin becomes dry and scaly Untreated: bacterial infection occurs later infecting toe and …

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Sebaceous Gland Skin Disorders

NOT Infectious     Milia Keratinization of skin over hair follicle causing sebum to accumulate in follicle.  Accompanies dry skin. Appearance: Small hard pearly white cysts Site: upper face, eyelids Treatment:  Therapist/GP may remove milium using sterile lancet to pierce overlying cuticle.  Micro-dermabrasion helps avoid development.  Retinoid creams remove outer epidermal …

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Skin Pigmentation Disorders

              Varies according to genetic characteristics. Generally: Darker the skin = more pigment present Hyperpigmentation = increased pigment production Hypopigmentation = loss of pigmentation in the skin NOT Infectious Ephelides (freckles) Multiple, small hyper-pigmented areas on skin.  UV exposure intensifies their appearance as it stimulates melanin production. Appearance: Small, flat, …

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Skin Allergies

Skin protects itself from damage or invasion Mast Cells detect damage and burst, releasing the chemical Histamine Histamine causes blood capillaries to dilate causing the reddening we call Erythema Increased blood flow transports materials in the blood that limit the damage and begin repairs   Allergen = a substance that …

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Malignant Tumours

NOT infectious Squamous Cell Carcinomas/Prickle Cell Cancers   Malignant growths originating in the epidermis. Appearance: Fully formed it appears like a raised area of skin Site:  Anywhere on the skin Treatment: surgical removal radiotherapy (x-ray treatment) or drugs Basal Cell Carcinomas/Rodent Ulcers Slow growing malignant tumours occurring in middle age. …

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Abnormal Skin Growths

NOT infectious Psoriasis Cause of psoriasis is unknownAppearance: Red patches Covered in waxy, silvery scales If scales come off from scratching, it bleeds Site:  Elbows, knees, lower back, scalp Treatment:  Steroid creams may bring relief, but no known treatment. Seborrhoeic/senile warts Can be confused with pigmented moles. Appearance: Raised Brown/black …

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The Hypodermis (Subcutaneous Layer)

Subcutaneous Layer/Basel Layer/hypodermis located under the dermis loose connective tissue accumulates and stores fat (adipose tissue) grouped together called lobules. stabilises the position of the skin in relation to underlying tissues cushions underlying body structures and organs from outside impact contains larger blood vessels and nerves than those found in the …

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