What is impetigo?
Impetigo is a highly contagious skin infection caused by bacteria called group A streptococcal (strep) or Staphylococcus aureus (staph). The infection happens when the bacteria get into scrapes and insect bites.
What are the signs and symptoms?
Signs and symptoms are commonly developed 7 to 10 days after bacteria attach to the skin and include:
- Pustules or crusted rash on face or exposed parts of the body (arms and/or legs).
- Can be itchy, and scratching will spread the infection.
How is it spread?
Impetigo can be spread:
- From person-to-person through direct skin contact with wounds or discharges from the infected area.
- By touching contaminated hands, surfaces, or objects.
How long is it contagious?
Impetigo is contagious from the onset of symptoms until 24 hours after start of treatment with antibiotics.
Should I see a health care provider?
Yes, contact your health care provider if you think you or your child has impetigo.