Concheiro and colleagues did a retrospective study of 122 cases of cellulitis and found tinea pedis in 33% of the cases.6 Muller et al. studied the importance of toe web microorganisms and erysipelas and found that the presence of interdigital tinea pedis was correlated with recurrent infection.7 Treatment of tinea pedis is an easily modifiable risk factor in patients with recurrent cellulitis.
Pearls: Consider adding a short course of steroids in patients with more severe erysipelas/cellulitis, as it can decrease hospital stay and IV antibiotics.
Look for tinea pedis and treat if present in patients who have erysipelas/cellulitis.
Dr. Paauw is professor of medicine in the division of general internal medicine at the University of Washington, Seattle, and serves as third-year medical student clerkship director at the University of Washington. Contact Dr. Paauw at.