Intended for healthcare professionals

Cellulitis: correct diagnosis and treatment of red legs

The number of people admitted to hospital with cellulitis increased by 88% between 2003 and 2012. The 2015 fall in admissions may be explained by the increased number of patients treated at home. Currently, up to 33% of cases thought to be cellulitis are misdiagnosed. Venous eczema, lympho-oedema and lipodermatosclerosis make up around half of the conditions wrongly diagnosed as cellulitis. This article offers guidance on how to differentiate between various causes of red legs using an evidence-based approach to diagnosis and treatment.
Dermatology in practice 2016; 22(2): 40–53
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