What are the most common secondary bacterial infections in patients with chickenpox (varicella)?

Updated: Aug 31, 2020
  • Author: Anthony J Papadopoulos, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

Secondary bacterial infection of skin lesions, manifesting as impetigo, cellulitis, and erysipelas, is the most frequent complication in otherwise healthy children. [9] Staphylococci and streptococci are the most commonly implicated bacterial pathogens. Bacterial superinfection may predispose to scarring. Localized bacterial superinfection rarely may manifest as septicemia, culminating in secondary bacterial pneumonia, otitis media, or necrotizing fasciitis. The latter represents significant, potentially life-threatening morbidity.


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