Skip directly to content

Abscesses

Text Increase:
Text Increase Normal
Text Increase Large
Text Increase Largest

An abscess is a skin infection that presents as a tender mass usually surrounded by a colored area ranging from pink to deep red. Abscesses can appear any place on the body. 

Causes of Abscess

Abscesses are generally caused by an obstruction of oil (sebaceous) glands or sweat glands, inflamed hair follicles, or minor breaks and punctures in the skin. When germs get under the skin or into skin glands, the body reacts with an inflammatory response and tries to kill the germs.

Symptoms of Abscess

  • Painful, compressible mass that is red, warm to the touch, and tender.
  • As some abscesses progress, they may "point" and come to a head so you can see the material inside and then spontaneously open (rupture).
  • Most will continue to get worse without care. The infection can spread to the tissues under the skin and even into the bloodstream.
  • If the infection spreads into deeper tissue, your child may develop a fever and begin to feel ill.

Treatments for Abscess

Abscesses are most often treated by incision and drainage. This involves numbing the area with medication, opening the abscess through an incision and draining the debris.

If you feel your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, please contact Florida Center for Pediatric Dermatology at 407.303.1687 or through our online contact form.