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Bacterial skin infections are quite common. As the largest organ in the human body, the skin is the front-line of defense against dangerous organisms. It is also home to a healthy balance of good and bad bacteria, which are generally not problematic until an imbalance in the skin's defenses creates an opportunity for unfriendly bacteria to cause skin infections.

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1. Furuncles and Carbuncles

Commonly referred to as boils, furuncles are pus-filled follicular infections. Furuncles, as well as carbuncles — clusters of boils — can appear on any part of the body. If they are large enough, they may contain infected pus that a doctor must drain and lance. Boils occur when bacteria under the skin multiply too quickly for the immune system to kill them off. These infections may resolve on their own or may require antibiotics.

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