erysipèle

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sue and paul
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erysipèle

Post by sue and paul » Wed 14 Jan 2009 19:14

Has anyone ever heard of this debilitating and temporarily (I hope) disfiguring illness? I (Sue) have been in Centre Hospitalier Perpignan, Maladies Infectieuses et Tropicales, for 5 days. Anyone sufficiently interested can google it; the English commonly-known term is St Anthony's Fire. Treatment is mainly by antibiotics.

I am on the mend, thank heavens. All the treatment I have had, from my Medecin Traitant, the specialists, and nurses, has been excellent.

You would be in good hands if you had to be in that place, but I hope it never happens to anyone. Horrible.

By the way, I'm not a vagrant, or an alcohol abuser, which are cited as 2 of the causes. I AM in the high-risk age group of 60 - 80, by a few months only. Some little streptococcus didn't hang around after my birthday!!!

Sue

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Post by Kathy » Wed 14 Jan 2009 21:06

You poor thing, it sounds horrible. It did say it can be picked up from cereals so you could have eaten something dodgy.
I bet you wondered what on earth was wrong with you.
Hope you are fighting fit soon.

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Post by carol sheridan » Wed 14 Jan 2009 21:21

Commiserations, Sue, hope you are soon on the mend.

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sue and paul
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Post by sue and paul » Wed 14 Jan 2009 21:23

Thanks girls. I'm rapidly improving, but do still look as though I've walked into a tree. It's all been rather alarming, and got bad so quickly.

Incidentally, erysipelas is the version of St Anthony's Fire that I had - caused by an opportunist streptococcus bacterium. There is another version, called ergotism, caused by ryegrass, which is probably what you have found Kathy

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Post by Marguerite & Steve » Wed 14 Jan 2009 21:58

Aahh Sue bless you, hope your OK, Tell you what, you can have all my sympathies I had for my flu, as clearly you have suffered more than me. Seriously tho, hope your on the mend, just think good weather soon and we can have another sing along...... :lol: :lol:

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Post by Roger O » Wed 14 Jan 2009 23:54

Sue, sympathies and all good wishes for a speedy recovery!

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Post by Kate » Thu 15 Jan 2009 08:36

Wow Sue - just been reading up on it - it sounds AWFUL! You poor thing - hope you're back to 100% as soon as possible. I feel really bad about even mentioning having a silly old cold compared to that!!! :oops:

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Post by opas » Thu 15 Jan 2009 08:52

Sue, This looks exactly like what our youngest had just before Xmas.
She mantioned one morning that her shin was sore, I took a look and declared her fit and well :cry: She was practically in tears when she arrived home that evening from school and when I looked at her leg it was red like a scald, swolen and would not let me feel for heat(though I could feel from a distance it was hot!!!) I immedialtly got in touch with the doctor and went there streight away, he did not name it mut did mention the strepococcus , he also said he wanted to see her again on monday (it was Fri evening) when I said we were going to UK on mon, he said to keep an eye on it and go to a UK doctor if in doubt, I cleared up very quicky with the antibiotics.

She had had surgery on that leg a few months previous and does have to keep an eye out anyway for any swelling problems due to Lyphatic systems, so I think that If I had not been so concious I could have easily ignored it for another day and treated it as a bite!!!!

Get well soon sue.

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Post by sue and paul » Thu 15 Jan 2009 13:07

Yes Opas, it does sound like the same thing - mine was identified as erysipèle du visage (as it's on my face, duh), but it's apparently more common these days for it to affect the leg. (The young and elderly are most at risk, and as I act like the former but really am the latter, it's not surprising it got me!! )

I think my hospitalisation was because it was on my face, and I was warned that without prompt treatment it could affect my brain. Hmmph...I wondered how they'd be able to tell!!!! Joking aside, it's been very painful and unsightly, but I'm improving by the minute. Hope your youngest is too.
Sue

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Post by opas » Thu 15 Jan 2009 13:44

She is as far as I can see, fully recovered. The antibitics were Bristopen and when I went to the pharmacy to get them she asked me what my daughter had done? which alarmed me really as they do not usually comment on what is dispensed.
I did realise the severity when the doctor said he wanted to see her again after the weekend, amd O watched her like a hawk , asking her how she felt , if her leg hurt as much etc.
Her leg has cleared up without any trace of a mark, have you been given any symptoms to look out for and if this will re occure?
I take it that you are normally healthy.

I have just had a thought, up to a few days before this incident my daughter had been using Silver to treat her slowly healing scars from her op...........I wonder if there is a connexion?

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Post by sue and paul » Thu 15 Jan 2009 14:16

sending you a pm Opas

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Post by thumbelina » Thu 15 Jan 2009 14:41

Best wishes for a speedy recovery, Sue! :D

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Post by sue and paul » Thu 15 Jan 2009 14:52

Thanks for all the good wishes. It's all been very sudden and alarming, but I AM alright now...have to go back as an outpatient next Tuesday for a check-up.

I happened to have a magazine nearby when the specialist was telling me there should be no scarring on my face. He saw the picture of Nigella Lawson on the front cover, and assured me I would look like her when recovered.....as bad as that......haha :lol:

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Post by thumbelina » Thu 15 Jan 2009 15:21

ha ha! :lol:

I wouldn't mind having an illness where I could go into hospital looking as I do and then come out looking like her!!!!!!!!!!!!

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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Post by Webdoc » Thu 15 Jan 2009 15:44

Germs get into the body through the skin all the time, via cuts and scratches etc. 99.99% of the time the body's immune system polishes them off in an instant, but just occasionally the germ is too quick and forms a "bridgehead" so to speak.

The famous Staphlococcus likes to cause a localised infection with pus - a boil or an oozing wound. The Sterptococcus however is a speedy little blighter and can spread rapidly under the skin causing a red, hot area and a shivery, flu-like feeling. This is called Cellulitis and can be very dangerous, not infrequently needing IV antibiotics to halt the rapid advancement.

Cellulitis most commonly occurs in the lower part of the leg, with the germs gaining access throght broken skin between the toes from Athletes Foot. I guess, being "the most distant part of the body" it's easier to form a bridgehead there (i.e. if you were going to invade Britain it might be easiest to land in Cornwall because it would be harder for the defending troops to get there). This has a nasty habit of recurring for reasons that I wont go into just now.

Erysipilis is the specific name for cellulitis of the face. It is pretty rare, and I've only seen it a couple of times in 25 years. It's particularily dangerous because (1) the skin on the face is "soft and loose" so the germs can spread quicker, and (2) it's only a short journey from the face to the viens draining the skull and then the brain itself.

Nine out of ten cases in the leg can be treated at home with high dose oral antibiotics (and vigilance), but brave (or foolish) is the doctor who treats erysipilis at home because it can go from bad to worse very quickly.

(There is of course a world of difference between an infection ON the skin and one UNDER the skin that's travelling fast.)

I'm not aware that erysipilis has a tendency to recur in the same way that cellulitis of the leg can.

Get well soon.

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Post by rbg » Thu 15 Jan 2009 15:53

You sound very brave about it all Sue.
Best wishes for a speedy recovery - hope someone is looking after you well.

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Post by sue and paul » Thu 15 Jan 2009 16:56

Thanks for the explanation, Webdoc.

I think I have been treated very well here, and very properly, as I set out by saying. Your words just convinced me of that.

I posted originally, not to advertise myself, but to raise awareness of the condition, and praise the local medical services. It has been very gratifying to read everyone's good wishes. Thanks

As Spike Milligan's epitaph reportedly says..."I told them I was ill !"

Sue

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Post by edann42 » Thu 15 Jan 2009 22:14

Well, I think you look gorgeous!! (Don't tell the Old Man I said so, though)!!!!!!!!!! :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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