Definition of impetigo in US English:



  • A contagious bacterial skin infection forming pustules and yellow crusty sores.

    This disease is caused by the bacteria Streptococcus pyogenes or S. aureus

    • ‘Most staph infections aren't serious; one example is impetigo, a contagious but superficial skin infection.’
    • ‘When someone has impetigo, the infection can spread to other household members on clothing, towels, and bed linens that have touched the person's infected skin.’
    • ‘Common skin infections include cellulitis, erysipelas, impetigo, folliculitis, and furuncles and carbuncles.’
    • ‘The doctor may also notice scratch marks and secondary bacterial infections such as impetigo.’
    • ‘Those ailments included scabies, a parasitic skin infection, and impetigo, a bacterial infection linked to poor sanitation.’
    • ‘One of the most common of these is impetigo - a skin infection that mainly affects infants and children.’
    • ‘The daycare wanted to make sure his skin wasn't contagious - much like impetigo or leprosy.’
    • ‘These symptoms can be confused with impetigo or cellulitis.’
    • ‘You're especially at risk if you have atopic dermatitis, eczema, impetigo or a history of these conditions.’
    • ‘Excessive scratching can cause a bacterial infection such as impetigo, which may make symptoms worse.’
    • ‘It can cause skin infections like impetigo and pustules.’
    • ‘It can be classified clinically as impetigo contagiosa (non-bullous impetigo) or bullous impetigo.’
    • ‘They can also be passed by touching the infected skin of someone who has strep impetigo, or by sharing towels, clothing or bed linen.’
    • ‘Several years later, Maureen discovered that the woman had had a severe case of impetigo, a highly contagious skin disease which, if untreated, can damage the kidneys, and cause septicaemia.’
    • ‘These two kinds of bacteria are the main causes of cellulitis and impetigo.’
    • ‘Eight children in the estate were infected with impetigo, a skin disease, which residents claimed was connected to the dump.’
    • ‘Prevent impetigo infection from spreading to other family members by using antibacterial soap and making sure that each family member uses a separate towel.’
    • ‘This bad water has caused skin diseases such as impetigo, scabies and eczema, as well as chronic diarrhea problems.’
    • ‘The differential diagnosis of nonbullous impetigo includes shingles, cold sores, cutaneous fungal infections, and eczema.’
    • ‘Staphylococcus aureus is a common type of bacteria that can live harmlessly on the skin but sometimes it can cause a number of common infections such as boils, impetigo and wound infections.’


Late Middle English: from Latin, from impetere ‘to assail, attack’.