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What is a belly button infection?

A belly button infection is an infection caused due to the growth of bacteria or fungi in the naval; usually, as a result of poor hygiene.

What are its main signs and symptoms?

The symptoms of a belly button infection can be as follows:

  • Discharge from the infected area.
  • Rashes and redness in the naval area.
  • Itching.
  • Flaking skin.
  • Crusting of skin on the belly button.
  • Foul odour.
  • Presence of cysts in the belly button.
  • Pain in the belly button area.
  • Tenderness in the belly button.

What are its causes?

Belly button infection can be caused due to bacterial and fungal growth. Poor hygiene allows the bacteria present in the naval area to grow rapidly and result in an infection. This infection is most commonly triggered by a belly button piercing or an injury. Hence, the open wound in case of a piercing is a risk factor for developing a belly button infection.

People suffering from diabetes are also at a higher risk of having a belly button infection since a high level of blood sugar promotes fungal and bacterial growth.

How is it diagnosed and treated?

The diagnosis of a belly button infection is usually done by a thorough physical exam by the doctor. However, to further investigate the causes, the doctor may take a sample of the skin around the area or of the discharge from the belly button to confirm the infection. 

The doctor may prescribe antifungal creams or ointments to treat the area.  Diet changes, which include lowered consumption of sugar, may also be recommended to assist the healing process. To aid the healing process, the infected area must be kept dry and clean at all times. For those with diabetes, it is essential to bring blood sugar levels under control to alleviate the current infection and prevent recurrence in the future.

  1. Belly Button Infection की दवा - Medicines for Belly Button Infection in Hindi
  2. Doctors for Belly Button Infection
Dr. Neha Gupta

Dr. Neha Gupta

संक्रामक रोग

Dr. Jogya Bori

Dr. Jogya Bori

संक्रामक रोग

Dr. Lalit Shishara

Dr. Lalit Shishara

संक्रामक रोग

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References

  1. Jiri Hulcr, Andrew M. Latimer, Jessica B. Henley, Nina R. Rountree, Noah Fierer, Andrea Lucky, Margaret D. Lowman, Robert R. Dunn. A Jungle in There: Bacteria in Belly Buttons are Highly Diverse, but Predictable. November 7, 2012
  2. Wei Chen,Lei Liu,Hui Huang, Mianxu Jiang, Tao Zhang. A case report of spontaneous umbilical enterocutaneous fistula resulting from an incarcerated Richter’s hernia, with a brief literature review. BMC Surg. 2017; 17: 15, PMID: 28193213
  3. Painter K, Feldman J. Omphalitis. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2019 Jan
  4. Karumbi J, Mulaku M, Aluvaala J, English M, Opiyo N. Topical Umbilical Cord Care for Prevention of Infection and Neonatal Mortality. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2013 Jan;32(1):78-83. PMID: 23076382
  5. Clinical Trials. Umbilical Cord Care for the Prevention of Colonization. U.S. National Library of Medicine. Umbilical Cord Care for the Prevention of Colonization.
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