Home Soft tissue infections Cutaneous abscesses

Cutaneous abscesses


To be considered a simple abscess, induration and erythema should be limited only to a defined area of the abscess and should not extend beyond its borders. Additionally, simple abscesses should not have extension into deeper tissues or multiloculated extension.


Primary management of cutaneous abscesses should be incision and drainage.
Incision, evacuation of pus and debris, and probing of the cavity to break up loculations provides effective treatment of cutaneous abscesses.
Antibiotic therapy is recommended for abscesses associated with the following conditions: severe or extensive disease (eg, involving multiple sites of infection or lesion > 5 cm)) or rapid progression in presence of associated cellulitis, signs and symptoms of systemic illness, associated comorbidities or immunosuppression, extremes of age, abscess in an area difficult to drain (eg, face, hand, and genitalia), associated septic phlebitis, and lack of response to incision and drainage alone.

Empiric antibiotic regimens. Normal renal function
One of following oral antibiotics
Cephalexin 500 mg 6-hourly
Amoxicillin-clavulanate 1,2 gr 8-hourly
Levofloxacin 500 mg 24-hourly
In patients at risk for CA-MRSA or who do not respond to first line therapy consider anti-MRSA antibiotics
One of following oral antibiotics
Minocycline 100 mg 12-hourly
Doxycycline 100 mg 12-hourly
Trimethoprim and Sulfamethoxazole 160/800 mg 12-hourly
Clindamycin 300–600 mg 8-hourly