Nasal Cellulitis: Causes, Symptoms and Treatments

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Nasal cellulitis is a common bacterial infection of the nose. The common bacteria that cause this infection are Staphylococcus or Streptococcus (commonly called Staph and Strep infections). An infection can occur due to the broken or sensitive skin around the nasal area. The condition is highly contagious.

Most infections are not serious; however, further complications are possible. This article will explain the common causes and symptoms as well as the best treatments and preventive measures.


Causes of Nasal Cellulitis

The most common causes of nasal cellulitis are trauma or injury to the nasal area. Additionally, excessive nose picking can also weaken the skin defense. Unclean wounds in the nasal area are also susceptible to infection.

Anything that damages the lining of the nasal area such as prolonged nose blowing can create the conditions for nasal cellulitis infection. Poor hygiene is a common cause of infection if the skin area is already weakened.

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Common Symptoms

The symptoms of nasal cellulitis are similar in a sense to other nasal conditions such as mild colds. There is usually swelling in the affected area which can cause redness on the tip and lining of the nose.

Nasal inflammation can also develop, and this is usually very painful. The swelling and redness may get worse as the infection spreads, before slowly subsiding back to normal. There are also other common symptoms, including headaches and fever.

The treatment for nasal cellulitis is often delayed because people wrongly assume they have a common cold. Therefore, it is important to visit a medical professional if you have these symptoms.


Nasal Cellulitis: Diagnosis & Treatment

All nasal pain and swelling should be looked at by a medical professional. He or she can rule out other serious causes and begin to treat the condition. Samples of blood or pus can be taken and examined to confirm the condition.

After diagnosis, appropriate antibiotics are commonly prescribed by the physician to treat the condition. Most patients respond well to this, and the infection clears up within two days. However, in some cases, the infection may get worse.

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It is important to get quick help if the symptoms begin to worsen as the infection may enter the bloodstream and cause serious complications. Nasal cellulitis is common and it usually subsides with adequate care. However, delaying treatment increases the risk of further complications.


Preventive Measures

There are some simple preventive measures that you can follow to prevent the onset of nasal cellulitis. The first is to follow basic hygiene regularly. This is the best way to prevent infections of all types.

Furthermore, you should always gently blow your nose when required and try not to pick it. It is important to restrict the number of times you touch your nose, as this can leave the skin vulnerable to cracks, which can cause infection.

Furthermore, all nasal area wounds should be properly cleaned. Any nasal pain and swelling is cause for concern.

It is important to visit a medical professional urgently since this condition can rapidly deteriorate.

Last article update: 9/9/2019

Medically reviewed by Dr. Thouria Bensaoula on Sept 06, 2019.