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How to Treat an Infected Floor Burn

By Michaele Curtis ; Updated July 27, 2017

A friction burn is a burn injury that results from the force of skin rubbing against a surface. A floor burn is the most common type of friction burn. Just like any other kind of burn, a floor burn should be cleaned and bandaged until it heals. If the floor burn wound is not properly cleaned or protected, it can develop an infection. Infected floor burns should be treated by a medical professional to avoid further complications.

  1. Recognize the signs of a floor burn infection. You may experience an increase in pain, redness and swelling-even though these symptoms should be decreasing as the burn injury heals. You may also notice pus or other drainage from the floor burn. An infected floor burn can also show up as red streaks that spread from the burn.

  2. See your health care provider. Most small, mild burn injuries can be treated at home with proper cleaning and bandaging. However, if your floor burn is showing signs of infection it is time to see your doctor. Your doctor will want to examine the floor burn and hear the details of how you got the burn injury.

  3. Receive an antibiotic prescription, such as penicillin or cefluroxime. Take the antibiotics according to your doctor and the manufacturer’s instructions. You may start to notice improvement after just a few days of taking the antibiotics, but you should continue to take the medication until it is gone.

  4. Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water. Avoid further irritation to the floor burn by keeping it clean and loosely bandaged. Keep an eye out for side effects from any medication you are taking and be sure to talk your doctor if you are bothered by any of them. You should also go back to your doctor if you do not see an improvement in your floor burn infection within a few days.

  5. Tip

    If the floor burn infection is particularly severe or does not respond to medication, your doctor may ask take swab of the burn injury and send it off to be cultured. An infection culture identifies the bacteria found in the burn injury so that it can be identified and treated more efficiently.


    Seek emergency medical attention if you have trouble breathing or notice swelling in your face, tongue or throat. These are the signs of an allergic reaction to the antibiotics you are taking for the floor burn infection.

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