Pus

Pus wound

Last Updated December 20th, 2021

Whenever the tonsils get inflamed and infected (tonsillitis), they become an easy ground for the bacteria to spread. The oral cavity provides a warm and moist atmosphere with a lot of leftover debris from food and this leads to rapid bacterial invasion. The S.pyogenes bacteria are responsible for pus-formation on the tonsils. If the tonsillitis infection is left untreated, it gradually becomes a pus-filled pocket, known as a peritonsillar abscess. These can also occur as a result of mononucleosis.
Even the eyes are highly susceptible to bacterial infections and hence pus accumulation. Excessive discharge from the eyes in the form of a white thick fluid is the indication of pus formation in the eyes. This is most commonly seen in the case of bacterial conjunctivitis. In many cases, a strep throat infection can give rise to pus formation in the eyelids. Many STIs such as gonorrhea or chlamydia also give rise to infections and pus accumulation in the eye.
If you are experiencing a burning sensation in your urine, chances are that you have a bacterial urinary tract infection and this could mean you have pus in the urine. Medically known as pyuria, this condition is not restricted only to UTIs. At times, there might be other causes too for high WBC count in your urine – pneumonia, polycystic kidney disease, and even intake of certain medications such as PPIs and NSAIDs.
Pus accumulates at the site of an infection. The moment your body’s immune system senses that it has been invaded by pathogens, it sends a team of disease-fighters, aka, the WBCs to that location. When these WBCs attack the pathogens, this results in the accumulation of these bodies and in addition dead tissue debris. The yellow liquid oozing out of an infection site (pus) is this exactly.
If the pus formation is due to the infection of anaerobic bacteria, it usually has a foul odor. The exact smell of pus depends on where it has formed. Many say that pus collection in the oral cavity (tooth abscess) smells like feces. Pyogenic (pus-causing) bacteria often give out a foul smell. This is because the bacteria breaks down healthy tissues and release certain enzymes which have a bad odor.
The color and odor of pus can indicate how serious the infection is. Generally, pus is yellowish in color because of accumulation of dead neutrophils. At times it can have a slight greenish tinge. A special type of antibacterial protein released by the WBCs makes the pus greenish in color. Another reason of green-colored pus could be an infection by P. aeruginosa. Brownish pus could mean that your liver has amoebic infection. Tinges of red are also seen in pus in several cases. This happens when the blood gets into the site of infection.

Overview

Environmental pollution, microbial infections, stress and numerous other factors may contribute to diseases of varying complexities. The part of the human body that is most sensitive to all the above factors is the skin. Hence the skin gets severely affected in most of the cases and may eventually lead to skin diseases of serious nature. A very common form of skin disorder is skin rashes. It may equally affect people belonging to all age groups and ethnic groups. These rashes often worsen and take the form of blisters filled with a whitish substance.

What is pus?

Pus woundIt is a sticky thick yellowish or pale greenish fluid that is often contained in the blisters or rashes formed due to microbial infections. These pus-filled blisters are mainly seen in bacterial or fungal infections. Pus is rich in a protein-type fluid called “liquor puris”. It also contains leukocytes that are produced by the immune response of the body.

During any kind of infection, the macrophages discharge chemicals known as cytokines, which in turn trigger the neutrophils. The latter releases granules which kill the pathogen. The pathogen, in turn, releases toxin known as leukocidins which helps in resisting the immune response. This can cause the death of the neutrophils due to destruction by the macrophages. This eventually leads to the formation of pus.

What does it look like?

Generally, it has a yellowish white color. In some cases, due to the presence of a myeloperoxidase, which is an antibacterial protein of greenish color, the pus may have a greenish tinge. Pseudomonas infection can form greenish, bad-smelling pus. The greenish color is attributed to a bacterial pigment known as pyocyanin.

Brownish pus is formed in liver abscesses caused by the amoeba. It is also foul-smelling and resembles an “anchovy-paste”. In general, an abscess is formed when an amount of pus gets trapped in a tissue space. Pustules may form due to build-up below the epidermis.

What are the different bacteria that form pus?

Pus wound in toesThe bacteria responsible for the formation of pus are known as pyogenic bacteria. The following species are often involved-

  • Staphylococcus aureus: It causes diseases like- skin infections, bone infections, joint infections and food poisoning.
  • Staphylococcus epidermidis: These infections are common in patients using an intravenous catheter or prosthetic devices.
  • Streptococcus pyogenes: The common diseases are- cellulitis and necrotizing fasciitis.
  • Escherichia coli: It is the main causative factor of different gastrointestinal diseases.
  • Streptococcus pneumonia: It mainly causes respiratory disorders.
  • Salmonella typhi: It causes typhoid.
  • Neisseria gonorrhoeae: It causes different sexually transmitted diseases like gonorrhea.
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis: This causes tuberculosis and other associated infections.

What are the different fungi that form pus?

Following are the different types of fungal infections that cause pus formation-

  • Nail fungus: The fungal agents that belong to this category are- dermatophytes, yeasts, and non-dermatophyte molds. Nail fungus or “Onychomycosis” is a medical term for a particular nail disease mediated by fungal infections. The nail, in this case, is called “mycotic nail” and is severely damaged in most of the cases. With the gradual growth and spread of the fungus, the nails become hard, thickened and yellowish with corroded edges and can even be uprooted in case of extreme damage. Nail fungus not only affects the nails but also damages the surrounding skin and underlying tissues.
  • Ringworm: Ringworm is a fungal infection caused by the tinea species that affects both human beings and other animals. It forms elevated reddish patches and pus-filled blisters. This infection is highly contagious.
  • Scalp psoriasis: Scalp psoriasis is the medical condition in which scaly patches and reddish plaques appear in different regions of the scalp. Under such conditions, the immune system of the body mistakes the dead skin cells as harmful foreign substances and attacks the skin itself. This results in the formation of whitish or greyish flakes on the skin along with itching, redness, and tenderness. Pus-filled blisters form at a more advanced stage.

Pus accumulation is painful and can easily become a hub for bacterial growth. Try these easy and effective pus treatment measures to avoid infections.

What are the different types of pus-filled eruptions?

Eruptions or blisters that are filled with pus are of different types and occur in different types of infections. These are given below-

  • Papules: They are also called micro comedones and appear as clusters producing a rough patch on the skin. A single papule is seen as a reddish eruption on the skin. These are usually caused due to the localized reaction on the skin and are inflammatory in nature. They are painful and extremely sensitive when touched.
  • Macule: Macules usually form as after-effects of papules. They appear as scaly spots with prominent borders and usually leave impressions after getting peeled off.
  • Pustules: They are also called “zits” or pimples and are often filled with pus. They are usually very sensitive and might transform into cysts in certain cases.
  • Nodules: They appear as irregular elevations on the skin and are painful when touched. Nodules are more critical in characteristics and are deep-rooted within the skin. They might lead to a gradual destruction of the underlying tissues and must be taken care of immediately after occurrence.
  • Cysts: Cysts are the most critical forms of acne so far and erupt as pus-filled lesions. They can intrude the deeper layers of skin, causing permanent damage to tissues.

How is it diagnosed?

Pus or pus-filled blisters are diagnosed through the following techniques-

  • Blood and swab tests
  • Fluid test
  • RAST (Radio Allergosorbent Test)


Treatment & prevention

Pus in diabetic footThe treatment method(s) used for treating pus depends upon the cause of the pus and also the severity of the pus infection. In mild cases, a warm and wet piece of sterile cloth can be used to compress and drain the pus. Care should be maintained when draining pus from a wound since it might lead to secondary bacterial infections. It is always wise to opt for expert medical help when draining larger and deeper pus wounds. The doctor will either drain the pus with the help of a needle or by making an incision just below the pus wound.

Pus is generally formed at the site of the infection. It could be white or yellow in color and consists of dead cells, tissue, and bacteria. Generally, bacteria or fungi enter the body through broken skin. The body will respond by sending neutrophils to fight off the pathogens. During this process, some of the neutrophils and tissue will die out. This is what forms as pus where the infection has occurred. Epsom salt is chemically magnesium sulfate. Epsom salts have a natural ability to draw out the pus, causing the abscess to drain.

For proper treatment of any kind of such blisters, it is necessary to find the root cause. Doctors usually recommend protective measures such as well ventilated clothes and shoes, or friction pads (for athletes) in order to reduce possibilities of blisters and eruptions containing pus.

While it is impossible to completely prevent the onset of pus and pus wounds, one can still decrease the likelihood of getting these by practicing the following methods:

  • Not sharing shaving equipment such as razors.
  • Keeping wounds clean, dry, and covered.
  • Scratching pimples or trying to pick them with any sharp object.

Facts

  • The main constituents of pus are white blood cells, infection-causing microbes, and some amount of decomposed body tissues.
  • Depending upon the nature and magnitude of the infection, the pus could be green, yellow, or brown in color.

Facts

  • Pus is a protein-rich fluid since it contains leukocytes (white blood cells).
  • One liter of cow’s milk contains roughly 200 million pus cells.

Facts

  • Pus discharge indicates that a wound is healing in the normal way, with microbes and infected tissues being flushed out of the system.

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Whenever the tonsils get inflamed and infected (tonsillitis), they become an easy ground for the bacteria to spread. The oral cavity provides a warm and moist atmosphere with a lot of leftover debris from food and this leads to rapid bacterial invasion. The S.pyogenes bacteria are responsible for pus-formation on the tonsils. If the tonsillitis infection is left untreated, it gradually becomes a pus-filled pocket, known as a peritonsillar abscess. These can also occur as a result of mononucleosis.
Even the eyes are highly susceptible to bacterial infections and hence pus accumulation. Excessive discharge from the eyes in the form of a white thick fluid is the indication of pus formation in the eyes. This is most commonly seen in the case of bacterial conjunctivitis. In many cases, a strep throat infection can give rise to pus formation in the eyelids. Many STIs such as gonorrhea or chlamydia also give rise to infections and pus accumulation in the eye.
If you are experiencing a burning sensation in your urine, chances are that you have a bacterial urinary tract infection and this could mean you have pus in the urine. Medically known as pyuria, this condition is not restricted only to UTIs. At times, there might be other causes too for high WBC count in your urine – pneumonia, polycystic kidney disease, and even intake of certain medications such as PPIs and NSAIDs.
Pus accumulates at the site of an infection. The moment your body’s immune system senses that it has been invaded by pathogens, it sends a team of disease-fighters, aka, the WBCs to that location. When these WBCs attack the pathogens, this results in the accumulation of these bodies and in addition dead tissue debris. The yellow liquid oozing out of an infection site (pus) is this exactly.
If the pus formation is due to the infection of anaerobic bacteria, it usually has a foul odor. The exact smell of pus depends on where it has formed. Many say that pus collection in the oral cavity (tooth abscess) smells like feces. Pyogenic (pus-causing) bacteria often give out a foul smell. This is because the bacteria breaks down healthy tissues and release certain enzymes which have a bad odor.
The color and odor of pus can indicate how serious the infection is. Generally, pus is yellowish in color because of accumulation of dead neutrophils. At times it can have a slight greenish tinge. A special type of antibacterial protein released by the WBCs makes the pus greenish in color. Another reason of green-colored pus could be an infection by P. aeruginosa. Brownish pus could mean that your liver has amoebic infection. Tinges of red are also seen in pus in several cases. This happens when the blood gets into the site of infection.

 

Dos and Don'ts

Dos
  • Pus formations after surgery should be immediately reported to the physician.
  • If the point of pus bursts open on its own, then wipe the entire area with a clean piece of cotton and press the end of the wounds to expel the pus completely. Apply antibiotic cream/ointment and cover the area with a clean bandage.
  • Turmeric is an excellent substance to apply to pus wounds because it has high anti-microbial properties.
Don'ts
  • Try to drain the pus at home, in case of large pus build-up. Refer to a doctor for surgical removal or drainage of the fluid.
  • Avoid going to the doctor if the pus formation is accompanied by fever and weakness.
  • Use turmeric as the sole method of treating the pus wound.

 

 

 

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Free PSA Test The free PSA test is used to detect the level or percentage of free PSA in the body…
Diabetes blood test
Diabetic Profile The diabetic profile is a set of tests used for testing and monitoring the various kinds of Diabetes…
Isagenix diet weight loss
How are BMI and BMR different and what do these numbers mean? BMI and BMR are two important metrics that provide a clear picture of your body's metabolism and also…
carrageenan seaweed
Carrageenan: How a simple seaweed extract could better your gut health & immunity Eat more ice cream to prevent cold and flu? –With carrageenan you get one simple seaweed extract that…
Jack in the box fast food
Jack In the Box : The perils of surging fast food culture in the USA Jack in the Box - How a culture of fast-food can clog your arteries, weaken your heart, fatten…
Bromelain: 11 reasons why you should start adding pineapple to your pizza! If you didn't love pineapples already, here are some of the top health benefits that bromelain can bring…
dandelion weight loss
Caralluma Fimbriata: How to eat this cactus to lose weight Caralluma fimbriata is a miracle cactus that can be safely consumed by most for losing weight and boosting…
Experts reveal the safest ways to perform an enema at home The idea of pushing some up your rectal area might make you queasy but an enema could actually…
Krill Oil: Does the solution to human illnesses really lie at the depths of the ocean? The word "krill" means “small fry of fish” in Norwegian. They are usually the primary food source of…
Tachycardia heart
Cardiac Profile Cardiac profile is panel of blood tests performed to check cholesterol level and other heart disease markers to…
smelling-salts-benefits
The actual science behind smelling salts and how it helps in injury recovery Most smelling salts are a mixture of ammonium carbonate and some perfumes which are sniffed by an individual…
hidden causes obesity
8 hidden causes of obesity you probably didn’t know! Did you know that around 2 billion people worldwide are either overweight or obese? Are you too a…
L-theanine attention
L-Theanine: Better sleep, higher focus, and many other benefits Did you know that L-theanine found in green tea can make you sleep better and be focused at…
gout diet purines
Gout Diet : Get relief from painful joints by eating these foods Are you a victim of this painful condition? Are medications providing only short relief? Find a list of…
Juice Plus: Can you really replace actual fruits with pills?  Juice Plus supplements intend to fill nutritional gaps present in our daily diet. But how successful have they…
Coconut sugar: What is it and is it healthier than table sugar? In the long list of things that the wonderful coconut gives us, coconut sugar is another remarkable addition.…
Astaxanthin: Why experts believe it could be 550x more potent than vitamin E! What is astaxanthin and why is this new supplement on the block touted as the most powerful antioxidant…
Muscle relaxers: Think twice before popping prescription drugs for muscle pain The market is brimming with OTC muscle relaxers. But these come with a host side-effects. Find out the…
Vagus nerve: 7 health benefits of stimulating the “gut-brain” connection As a matter of fact, there are two vagus nerves namely the left and the right but is…
Appendix pain: Recent findings on this not-so vestigial organ The exact function of the appendix is still not clear. Some consider it as an organ that once…
Inhale oxygen, exhale worries: The top breathing exercises and how to perform them Performing the breathing exercise is like becoming mindful of how you breathe.  Here is a list of breathing…
EEG
Electroencephalogram – EEG EEG or electroencephalogram is a diagnostic tool used to access the functioning of neurons and brain activity to…
BoneMarrow-Biopsy
Bone Marrow Biopsy Bone marrow biopsy is a diagnostic procedure where a small amount of bone marrow is extracted from hip…
ureteroscopy
Ureteroscopy Ureteroscopy is the diagnostic procedure which is used for the detection of the kidney stones in addition to…
BULIMIA NERVOSA vomiting
Can you get addicted to food? Learn everything about food addiction What is food addiction? How can people get addicted to eating? Is it an unhealthy eating habit or…
hidden benefits walking
9 benefits of walking we bet you didn’t know! Did you know walking can be the miracle pill for eternal youth? Everyone knows walking is good for…
eating disorder anorexia
Eating Disorders: Lifestyle choice or a psychological condition? Is eating disorder just a harmless bad habit? Or does it represent grim psychological disorders? Do you want…
oral hygiene tips
6 shocking consequences of bad oral hygiene (and how to avoid them) Did you know bad breath is not just turning off, but also harms your body in ways you…
Plexus Slim: Is this pink slimming drink the ultimate one-stop fat burner? How effective is Plexus Slim in helping people lose weight? What are its ingredients? Can it be safely…
Coffee Enema: Turn your favorite morning beverage into a powerful colon cleanser The wonders of coffee are not just limited to waking you up every morning. You can now use…
Vitamin b12
Vitamin B12 Test Vitamin b12 is an essential nutrient required for healthy functioning of the nervous system and also development of…
LFT-test
Liver Function Test – LFT LFT or Liver Function Test is a blood test used to determine the levels of hepatic enzymes which…
liver biopsy procedure
Liver Biopsy Liver biopsy or hepatic biopsy is a diagnostic tool that collects a sample of live tissue from the…
phenytoin test
Phenytoin test Phenytoin is a drug that is administered mainly to epilepsy patients. The phenytoin blood test measures the level…
carbamazepine
Carbamazepine / Tegretol test The carbamazepine is a drug that is used to treat epilepsy and the carbamazepine test is performed to…
HSV-1_IGG
Herpes Simplex Virus I (HSV)-IgG Test Herpes simplex virus I(HSV)-IgG is an Immunoglobulin protein that acts as an antibody & stays in the blood…
cardioliin antibody iga
Cardiolipin Antibody (ACL) – IgA test Cardiolipins are phospholipids that are constituents of the platelets and the cell membranes. The IgA test detects the…
antiHEV IgM test
Anti hepatitis E virus (Anti HEV) IgM Test Anti HEV IgM test determines the level of the IgM antibodies in the blood, The disease is often…
Squid-ink-spaghetti
Squid Ink: A unique food coloring and flavoring agent Want to add a unique black color to your pasta, noodles and ice-creams? How can you use squid…
Squid-ink-spaghetti
Squid Ink: A unique food coloring and flavoring agent Want to add a unique black color to your pasta, noodles and ice-creams? How can you use squid…
Squid-ink-spaghetti
Squid Ink: A unique food coloring and flavoring agent Want to add a unique black color to your pasta, noodles and ice-creams? How can you use squid…
fitness routine fun
10 fantastic ways to make your fitness routine more fun! Are you too bored to exercise? Do you avoid gym cause it's too monotonous? Looking for fun and…
alcohol toxic
7 startling facts that will make you quit alcohol today Does drinking really make you friendly and happy? How many calories does a can of cold beer add…