[ im-pi-tahy-goh ]

  1. a contagious skin disease, especially of children, usually caused by streptococcal bacteria, marked by a superficial pustular eruption, particularly on the face.

Origin of impetigo

1350–1400; Middle English <Latin impetīgō, equivalent to impet(ere) to make for, attack (see impetus) + -īgō, as in vertīgōvertigo

Other words from impetigo

  • im·pe·tig·i·nous [im-pi-tij-uh-nuhs], /ˌɪm pɪˈtɪdʒ ə nəs/, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

British Dictionary definitions for impetigo


/ (ˌɪmpɪˈtaɪɡəʊ) /

  1. a contagious bacterial skin disease characterized by the formation of pustules that develop into yellowish crusty sores

Origin of impetigo

C16: from Latin: scabby eruption, from impetere to assail; see impetus; for form, compare vertigo

Derived forms of impetigo

  • impetiginous (ˌɪmpɪˈtɪdʒɪnəs), adjective

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for impetigo


[ ĭm′pĭ-tī ]

  1. A contagious skin infection caused by staphylococcal or streptococcal bacteria and seen most commonly in children. Impetigo is characterized by superficial pustules that rupture and form thick yellow crusts, usually on the face.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.