Q. Flea caused a scab which is itchy and oozing fluid. Is it cellulitis?

Answered by
Dr. Asmeet Kaur Sawhney
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
Published on Dec 03, 2019

Hello doctor,

Usually, I let my cats go out and play in the backyard. They frequently bring in fleas and bugs in the house. So I get flea and bug bites. I usually get red bumps on the areas of my legs and lower legs. But recently I notice that there is a confined area that looks like a scab. This is how it happened? The area was really itchy so I started scratching it a lot. After this I noticed a fluid or watery stuff coming out of it. After this, I noticed a scab formed in that area. It is dark red and looked strange.

So I took a picture of it and asked a doctor online. He said it was an early form of cellulitis, and suggested some antibiotics for it. I did another consultation with a doctor online, and he said it is a minor allergy like dermatitis from the flea bites and suggested some cream and antibiotics. I am confused. So, I went to my doctor today and she told me she does not think it is cellulitis. However, she can prescribe me antibiotics in case it is cellulitis. I heard most of the time if someone has cellulitis but there being treated with antibiotics the prognosis is very good and the infection leaves in about seven to ten days. If you do not take antibiotics it can be life-threatening. Is it true?

The antibiotic I was prescribed was Cephalexin 500 mg one capsule four times a day for 10 days. Is taking four times a day means like in the morning, afternoon, evening, and night? I thought of takiing it twice a day. I am confused. I am going to take a picture of that area. Please let me know if it is cellulitis? It looks like a scab though. Can cellulitis or even minor cellulitis look like a scab? In your opinion should I take the antibiotics? Does it look like cellulitis to you, or just a flee allergy reaction that got itchy? I have attached a picture.

Dr. Asmeet Kaur Sawhney

Cosmetology Dermatology Venereology
#

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have reviewed the attached photograph and can appreciate the scabbed area. (attachment removed to protect patient identity).

It is not cellulitis at all. It is because of the intense itching the area has excoriated and then turned into a scab. No need to take oral antibiotics. You can simply apply topical antibiotics like Neosporin ointment on the affected areas twice daily for seven to ten days. This will resolve the scab. Do not scratch it and let it fall off on its own.


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