Staphylococcus aureus and pathogenic streptococci are commonly associated with abscess formations of the head and neck. Anaerobic bacteria, primarily Bacteroidaceae are commonly present in abscess formation of the head and neck. Anaerobic infections have not been considered to the extent their presence indicated. Appropriate antibiotic therapy, currently Clindamycin, is usually straightforward, but resistance may develop, making the individual case more difficult. Anaerobic infections should be considered whenever a foul smelling abscess occurs. A Gram stained smear of the pus may reveal pleomorphic Gram-negative bacteria. Treatment of an abscess includes in addition to the antibiotic therapy surgical incision and drainage of purulent collections, open treatment of infected wounds, maitenance of fluids, hemoglobin and nutrition.
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