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Abscess Specialist

Melinda Nicole Lamb, M.D. -  - General Surgeon

Melinda Nicole Lamb, M.D.

General Surgeon located in Costa Mesa, CA

An abscess forms if you cut yourself or experience another minor wound, and it gets infected. Small abscesses typically resolve on their own, but bigger ones often require surgical intervention. Dr. Lamb specializes in abscess drainage and removal at her self titled practice, Dr. Melinda Nicole Lamb MD, in Costa Mesa, California. Using surgical tools and local anesthesia, the process is quick and pain-free. To make an appointment, call or click the online booking feature today.

Abscess Q & A

What is an abscess?

An abscess is a pocket of pus that forms just beneath the surface of your skin. It occurs when bacteria enter a cut or another wound, resulting in an infection.

In most cases, Dr. Lamb drains and removes abscesses on an outpatient basis. That means you don’t have to stay in the hospital and can return to work and other activities right away.

What are the symptoms of an abscess?

Symptoms of an abscess include:

  • A swollen area of skin that looks like a large pimple
  • Skin that’s red, tender, or warm
  • A hardened outer layer of skin
  • Pain

If the infection spreads or is severe, you might also develop a fever or experience chills.

When should I see a surgeon about an abscess?

Make an appointment with Dr. Lamb if you develop a skin abscess and it doesn’t go away within a few days. That’s especially true if the abscess:

  • Grows
  • Oozes pus
  • Is red, warm, or sensitive to the touch
  • Causes you to develop a fever

Following a review of your medical records, a discussion of your symptoms, and an exam, Dr. Lamb can make treatment recommendations.

What does removing an abscess involve?

Dr. Lamb usually removes abscesses during an outpatient procedure.

On the day of your abscess removal, you sit or lie down on an exam table. Dr. Lamb cleans and sterilizes the abscess and administers a local anesthetic to numb your skin. 

Once the anesthesia sets in and you’re comfortable, Dr. Lamb makes a small incision. She carefully drains the abscess and then cleans out the empty pocket with a sterile solution. 

Next, Dr. Lamb covers the abscess with a wound dressing. The dressing helps absorb blood and pus while your abscess heals. Dr. Lamb might also take a sample from the abscess for bacterial analysis.

How long does it take to recover after the removal of an abscess?

The length of time it takes to recover after removing an abscess depends on several factors, including the location of the abscess and the severity of your infection. To ensure the recovery process goes smoothly, change your dressings regularly and take your antibiotics as prescribed. Your skin should heal completely within two to three weeks.*

To learn more about treatment for an abscess, make an appointment at the practice of Dr. Melinda Nicole Lamb MD by calling the office or booking online today.

*Individual results may vary.