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Point-of-Care Ultrasound for Skin and Soft Tissue Infections

Comer, Amanda B., DNP, FNP, ACNP, ENP

Section Editor(s): Wilbeck, Jennifer DNP, RN, FNP-BC, ACNP-BC, ENP-C, FAANP; Column Editor

doi: 10.1097/TME.0000000000000208

Skin and soft tissue infections are a common complaint seen in the emergency setting, with diagnosis traditionally made by history and physical examination alone. Cellulitis and cutaneous abscesses are often misdiagnosed. Because cellulitis and cutaneous abscesses can appear similar in presentation, they are often misdiagnosed and thus treated inappropriately. To improve accuracy of diagnosis and thus treatment, evidence now supports the use of point-of-care ultrasound for diagnosis of skin and soft tissue infections. This article reviews the difference in the 2 most common skin and soft tissue infections and discusses implications for point-of-care ultrasound in the emergency care setting to aid in diagnosis.

Department of Emergency Medi-cine, Magnolia Regional Health Center, Corinth, Mississippi.

Corresponding Author: Amanda B. Comer, DNP, FNP, ACNP, ENP, Department of Emergency Medicine, Magnolia Regional Health Center, 703 Alcorn Dr, Ste 109, Corinth, MS 38834 (

Disclosure: The author reports no conflict of interest.

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