Erysipeloid Treatment & Management

Updated: Apr 18, 2017
  • Author: Marc Zachary Handler, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Medical Care

The antibiotics of choice for the three forms of erysipeloid are penicillin or cephalosporin. [12] Ceftriaxone proved to have an effect against Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae. In patients who are allergic to penicillin, ciprofloxacin alone or erythromycin in combination with rifampin may be used. The microorganism is resistant to vancomycin, an important consideration in patients with endocarditis caused by E rhusiopathiae. [9, 13] E rhusiopathiae is also resistant to chloramphenicol, daptomycin, gentamycin, netilmicin, streptomycin, teicoplanin, tetracycline, and trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole. [7]

E rhusiopathiae has been shown to be eradicated from surfaces by the use of simple home disinfectants; thus, an important step in the prevention of infection may be to spray hazardous work areas (eg, fishing boats, meat counters) with disinfectants. [14]


Surgical Care

Procedures usually are not used in the cutaneous form of erysipeloid. Even a simple incision and drainage of lesions is not recommended as this may prolong the recovery time.

Individuals with the systemic form of erysipeloid may undergo surgery (eg, cardiac valve replacement), pleural tap, or other procedures, depending on extent of organ involvement.



An infectious disease specialist may be consulted when deciding treatment, especially in cases of bone and joint involvement.

Opinions from a cardiologist and cardiothoracic surgeon are mandatory in cases of endocarditis.

Pulmonologists are consulted in cases of pleural effusion.

Neurologists and neurosurgeons are consulted when presence of CNS disease.



Activity usually is not restricted. Individuals with the systemic form of erysipeloid may be advised to be on bed rest.



Educate patients to use care when handling animals and their products.