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Classification according to ICD-10
L03 Phlegmon
ICD-10 online (WHO version 2019)

The phlegmon ( ancient Greek φλεγμονή phlegmoné , German 'inflammation, heat' ) is a purulent , diffusely spreading infectious disease of the soft tissues (the interstitial connective tissue ).

A special form of phlegmonous inflammation of the skin is phlegmonous erysipelas , (from ancient Greek ἐρυσίπελας erysipelas , German , erysipelas' ) called.

Symptoms and ailments

Phlegmon is associated with pain and inflammation in the affected area and can be associated with a fever . Purulent inflammation forms on the inflamed area , which spreads.

root cause

The pathogens are mostly β-hemolytic streptococci , more rarely Staphylococcus aureus . External causes are often minor skin injuries (e.g. fissures ).

Phlegmons can be found under and in the skin tissues, in the mediastinum , on the back of the peritoneum and in and around muscles , fasciae and tendons . The limbs are often affected, where an overheated, livid erythema is visible.

Consequences and complications

Significant impairment of general well-being, spread of the infection and thus destruction of body tissue , with inadequate treatment risk of potentially life-threatening sepsis .


The treatment is primarily medication with suitable antibiotics , usually high-dose penicillinase-resistant penicillin . If you are allergic to penicillin, cephalosporins should not be administered, as cross-reactions are possible, which is why treatment with macrolide antibiotics is considered. If the phlegmon "melts down", surgical wound treatment with removal of the dead (non-vital) tissue and pus ( debridement / drainage ) may be necessary.


  • Dorothea Terhorst: Basics Dermatology. = Dermatology. Elsevier, Urban & Fischer, Munich et al. 2005, ISBN 3-437-42136-0 .