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3 Signs You Have an Infected Wound

3 Signs You Have an Infected Wound

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infected wound

Skin irritations are one possible sign of infections.

In the wound healing process, one of the primary aims is to avoid infection at all costs. Depending upon the specific strain, these infections can have a sizable effect on your overall health and wellbeing. Yet these infections are not always avoidable. In fact, according to a survey published the U.K.’s Nosocomial Infection National Surveillance Service found that 10 percent of all hospital acquired infections were related to surgical wounds.

One of the ways to avoid infections is to know what to look out for within your body overall. There are a number of distinct signs of infection – including malaise, high fevers and continual pain – and staying cognizant of these is often the first step in any effective wound care management plan. Here are a few more signs of wound infection:

Red streaks

Even with the most surface-level wounds, most patients still have a rather high chance of developing an infection. The most common such perpetrator is streptococci bacteria, which enters into the skin and tissue through these cuts and scrapes. From there, they enter into the lymph nodes, which the body relies on as part of the overall immune system. As a result of this attack on the lymph nodes, red and irregular streaks will develop on the body directly surrounding the infected wound. The streaks will also stretch toward the nearest group of lymph nodes, usually those near the armpits or groin. The lymph nodes themselves will also be painful or tender to the touch.

The smell

It’s rather easy to see the existence of infections, namely through the appearance of the aforementioned red streaks. However, as the Daily Mail reported, several studies have found that people can smell certain infections. That is, the human body creates certain chemicals as it fights off various diseases, which other people then interpret as distinct odors. For instance, scrofula – another infection of the lymph nodes – has been noted to smell of stale beer. Meanwhile, infections related to diabetes have an odor that’s been described as similar to acetone (which is found in nail polish remover). Generally speaking, the sweat of those battling infections was also noted as being unpleasant by participants of a recent research study.


There are a number of unique causes of dizziness, including motion sickness and any disturbance to the inner ear itself. However, dizziness can also be the result of an infection. That usually happens when a bacterial or viral strain affects the vestibular nerve, which is actually a bundle of cranial nerves primarily responsible for hearing and balance. Often the result of this infection – referred to as vestibular neuritis – results in constant vertigo, which creates the false sense of spinning that can be debilitating for certain patients.

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