Pustular skin conditions

Author: Dr Amanda Oakley, Dermatologist, Hamilton, New Zealand, September 2015.

Pustules are smaller than 5–10 mm, and filled with pus, ie purulent material composed of inflammatory cells (neutrophils).

This topic provides a differential diagnosis of pustular skin conditions.

Acute mainly pustular generalised eruptions

Generalised pustular psoriasis

Acute generalised exanthematous pustulosis

Acute mainly pustular localised eruptions

Impetigo

Furunculosis/boil

Folliculitis

Dermatophyte infection

Thrush

Miliaria

Chronic mainly pustular eruptions

Acne

Acneform eruptions

Scabies

Dermatophyte infection

Localised pustulosis

Erosive pustular dermatosis

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