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Possible signs and symptoms of cellulitis include:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Tenderness
  • Pain
  • Warmth
  • Fever

The changes in your skin may be accompanied by a fever. Over time, the area of redness tends to expand. Small red spots may appear on top of the reddened skin, and less commonly, small blisters may form and burst.

When to see a doctor

It's important to identify and treat cellulitis early because the condition can cause a serious infection by spreading rapidly throughout your body.

Seek emergency care if:

  • You have a red, swollen, tender rash or a rash that's changing rapidly
  • You have a fever

See your doctor, preferably that day, if:

  • You have a rash that's red, swollen, tender and warm — and it's expanding — but without fever
Feb. 23, 2012

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