Carbuncle treatment, causes of Carbuncle


  • Posted on- Mar 24, 2017
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Carbuncle is a skin infection resulting in the formation of a lump that may contain pus. Carbuncle is also known as staph skin infection. When there is a formation of more than one carbuncle, it is called Carbonculosis. A carbuncle occurs deep under the skin and involves a group of hair follicles. Carbuncle appears as a swollen, red, and painful bunch of boils that are linked to each other beneath the skin. Carbuncle generally develops in a hairy area of the body, such as behind the neck, armpits, thighs, buttocks, and groin. Carbuncles are more common among men than in women.

Causes of Carbuncle

Carbuncle skin infection is caused by the bacteria staphylococcus, streptococcus pyogenes, and methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus. These bacteria enter the skin by piercing through hair follicles. Carbuncle is highly contagious therefore, it can spread easily to other parts of the body and can affect other people. A lump formed due to carbuncle is filled with fluid, pus, and dead tissue. People with dermatitis, diabetes, and weak immune system are at greater risk of developing staph infections as their body cannot defend bacteria for longer periods. Sometimes poor hygiene and a cut from clothing or shaving can also cause carbuncle.


A general symptom of Carbuncle is formation of red boil under your skin. A carbuncle can range from a size of a pea to the size of half grown onion. Other symptoms of carbuncle may include:

  • Fatigue
  • Fever
  • Irritation
  • Swelling
  • Itching
  • Pain around the affected area
  • Spreading of lump to other skin areas

Diagnosis of Carbuncle

A dermatologist usually diagnoses a carbuncle by looking at it. Tell him about the symptoms you have been experiencing. He may also take a pus sample from the carbuncle. This sample is observed in the lab to determine causative agent. If you have diabetes or other health issues, a dermatologist may order urine test or blood test to check your overall health. A blood test will help in detecting the infection that might be causing carbuncle.


Most of the carbuncles are easily treatable at home. However, if the boil is near the eyes, nose, or spine, it is recommended to see a dermatologist. There are very rare chances that carbuncle could lead to infections that are serious in nature.

Home cures for Carbuncles

  • Wash the carbuncle with antibacterial soap
  • Avoid frequent touching of carbuncle
  • Wash your hands after touching a boil
  • Place a warm moist cloth on the carbuncle for a few minutes
  • Apply sterile bandage to avoid further growth of infection

Medicinal treatment for Carbuncles

  • Antibiotics that will help in faster draining of pus
  • Pain killers, to reduce pain
  • Doctor prescribed ointment
  • Draining the carbuncle with a needle by a dermatologist

Preventing Carbuncles

  • Regularly wash clothes, sheets and towel
  • Always wash hands before eating anything
  • Avoid sharing towel, razor, or trimmer
  • Use antibacterial soap to prevent bacterial inhabitancy


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