|Clinical Guidelines and Treatment Manual (Médecins Sans Frontières, 1993)|
|Chapter 4 - Skin conditions|
Infections and infestations are by far the most frequent forms of skin pathology in tropical countries. As well as treating affected individuals, it is important to consider these conditions as indicators of the general standard of hygiene and sanitation and to define appropriate public health interventions (provision of water that is adequate in quality and quantity, health education, soap...).
Clinical assessment of the patient
The physical examination:
- Describe the basic lesions:
· weeping lesions
- Look for pruritis.
- Look for regional or systemic manifestations: lymphangitis, adenopathy, fever, septicemia, metastatic infection...
- Look for a cause: mosquito bite, jewelry, allergy, scabies, lice, otitis media.
- Consider the nutritional status and the general health of the family, particularly for infectious dermatosis.
Patients with dermatological conditions often present late. At
this stage, initial and specific signs are often replaced by infection. In these
cases, treating the overlying infection is not enough.
Patients should be re-examined after the treatment of infection.