What Causes Discoid Eczema
The cause of discoid eczema is unknown, although it is often accompanied by dry skin and is thought to be triggered by irritation of the skin.
Discoid eczema tends to affect adults and is rare in children. It is more common among men aged from 50 to 70 and women in their teens or twenties.
Some people with discoid eczema may also have other types of eczema, such as atopic eczema.
Read more about the causes of discoid eczema.
Dry Crusty Cracked And Flaky Skin Patches
Over time, the patches may become dry, crusty, cracked and flaky. the centre of the patch also sometimes clears, leaving a ring of discoloured skin that can be mistaken for ringworm.
You may just have one patch of discoid eczema, but most people get several patches. The skin between the patches is often dry.
Patches of discoid eczema can sometimes become infected.
Signs of an infection can include:
- the patches oozing a lot of fluid
- a yellow crust developing over the patches
- the skin around the patches becoming red, hot, swollen, and tender or painful
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What you may see: Typically multiple little pink to flesh-colored bumps with a central white plug can be seen commonly on the extremities, torso and genitalia, although they can also occur on the eyelids. Often these bumps can be confused with pimples. Unlike pimples however, these bumps are caused by a virus and are highly contagious. This means that scratching, picking or rubbing the bumps can spread the virus to other parts of your skin and the germs on your hands and nails can infect the bumps with bacteria making them feel painful and/or contribute to developing a fever. It also requires that affected individuals do not share towels or personal items that touch affected areas. Of note, while this condition is commonly seen in children and referred to as swimmers warts, in adults MC is considered a sexually transmitted infection. If a person is immunocompromised for any reason, the virus may spread readily and can be difficult to control and treat. Moreover, if an individual develops recurrent MC infection, it might be a sign that they are immunodeficient.
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Other Etiologies Of Annular Lesions
Granuloma annulare is a relatively common, self-limiting disorder of the dermis that affects women twice as often as men.7 The eruption has a predilection for young adults and children, with most cases presenting before the third decade of life.1,7 Although the etiology remains unknown, GA is controversially associated with diabetes mellitus and hyperlipidemia.8 Several clinical variants of GA exist however, localized disease primarily affects the dorsal surfaces of the fingers, hands, elbows, feet, and ankles.1,7 Lesions are characterized by asymptomatic, erythematous to violaceus colored papules or plaques with a thin, smooth border.9 Lesions develop slowly, spread peripherally, and involute centrally, conferring an annular appearance.9 An isolated lesion on the hand or arm represents most cases.7
Granuloma annulare can be diagnosed clinically by its unique distribution and morphology. Asymptomatic lesions with smooth, non-scaly contours are differentiated easily from the pruritic, scaly, and rough lesions of tinea. Biopsy with histopathologic correlation can be used to confirm or establish the diagnosis when not clinically obvious.7
Red Patches On Skin Causes
As said, they is an array of possible causes that could lead to red and blotchy skin. Some of the causes might be serious causing harsh and severe symptoms, on the other hand, some causes might be mild and will clear on their own within a day or two. Here are some of the possible cause of red patches on skin.
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Figure 10 Sharply Demarcated Scaly Patch Of Seborrheic Dermatitis Affecting The Presternal Area
Seborrheic dermatitis may closely resemble tinea or psoriasis, especially in the groin. Distribution is helpful in distinguishing seborrheic dermatitis from tinea. When seborrheic dermatitis is present on the face, lesions are remarkably symmetric, mostly affecting the forehead, eyebrows, and retroauricular areas.36 When present in large folds, seborrheic dermatitis tends to be centered along the crease, whereas tinea is less often as symmetric.36 In addition, patches and plaques of seborrheic dermatitis typically are more numerous and appear greasier than lesions of tinea. Plaques of psoriasis are associated with a heavier scale that, unlike seborrheic dermatitis, bleeds when removed.32
Treatment consists of imidazoles, mainly ketoconazole, as a shampoo when present on the scalp or cream when present on the face and body.36 Topical steroids work quickly and are effective but should be limited because of the risk of steroid rosacea.32 Once cleared, daily maintenance therapy is important to prevent relapse.
How To Use Emollients
Use your emollient all the time, even if you are not experiencing symptoms as they can help limit the return of your condition. Many people find it helpful to keep separate supplies of emollients at work or school.
To apply the emollient:
- use a large amount
- don’t rub it in, smooth it into the skin in the same direction that the hair grows instead
- for very dry skin, apply the emollient every two to three hours
- after a bath or shower, gently dry the skin and then immediately apply the emollient while the skin is still moist
If you are exposed to irritants at work, make sure you apply emollients regularly during and after work.
Don’t share emollients with other people.
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Topical Treatments And Drugs
Professional treatment for these conditions often starts with an ointment or cream, which may contain steroids or antibiotics. A healthcare professional may also recommend steroid injections or tablets, oral antibiotics, or anti-allergy medications.
However, for Lyme disease, antibiotic tablets or injections are the first-line treatment.
For psoriasis, a wide range of medicated creams include:
- coal tar, a thick oil, to reduce itchiness and swelling
- synthetic vitamin A or D creams to slow skin cell production
- calcineurin inhibitor creams, such as pimecrolimus or tacrolimus, for off-label use to suppress the immune system
Even after a person uses topical treatment and steroids, severe cases of psoriasis may require an oral or injectable biologic drug.
When To See A Doctor
If your lower leg rash persists despite the home remedies above, make an appointment with your doctor. If your itching is caused by an underlying metabolic, hematologic or neurologic condition, your doctor will focus on treating that condition first. If your symptoms are due to another cause, he or she may suggest the following treatments that may help relieve your itchy skin:
- Corticosteroid creams: If your itching is due to a rash or skin disorder such as eczema or dermatitis, corticosteroids are helpful given their anti-inflammatory effect in addition to their immunosuppressive role.
- Antihistamines: If your itching is due to an allergic reaction, your doctor may prescribe medications that fight the immunologic response causing your inflammation and itching.
- Light therapy : This treatment involves exposing the skin to specific wavelengths of ultraviolet light in order to help get the itching sensation under control.
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Causes And Types Of Raised Skin Bumps
The most common causes of raised skin bumps are harmless and do not require medical treatment unless you have discomfort. Here are some of the possible reasons for raised skin bumps:
Less commonly, raised skin bumps are caused by more serious conditions that require treatment. Certain bacterial and viral infections cause bumps and will only get worse if they go undiagnosed and untreated. These serious conditions include:
- chickenpox, a common childhood virus characterized by red, itchy bumps that form all over the body
- impetigo, a bacterial skin infection common in young children that is highly contagious and results in reddish blisters that ooze and develop a honey-colored crust
- MRSA infection, an illness triggered by a staph bacteria that commonly lives on the skin, causing a swollen, painful bump with a white center
- scabies, a skin infestation caused by a tiny mite called Sarcoptes scabiei, producing an itchy, pimple-like rash
Other types of raised skin bumps can be caused by skin cancer. There are several types of skin cancer, all requiring medical management and treatment:
Most skin bumps are harmless and arent cause for concern. However, you should see your doctor if:
- skin bumps change or worsen in appearance, or last for a long time
- you are in pain or they cause discomfort
- you dont know the cause of the bumps
- you suspect you have an infection or skin cancer
The Healthline FindCare tool can provide options in your area if you dont already have a doctor.
What Are The Complications Of A Skin Rash
Theyre bothersome and unsightly, but skin rashes usually respond well to treatment. They rarely cause serious problems. Potential issues include:
- Anaphylaxis: A severe allergic reaction can cause a skin rash and a life-threatening condition called anaphylaxis. Extreme swelling from anaphylaxis can close air passages. People in anaphylaxis need an immediate epinephrine injection to counteract this allergic response. If youve ever felt your throat or mouth swelling when you get a rash, talk to your healthcare provider about whether you need to carry an EpiPen®.
- Infection: Scratching an itchy rash can break open the skin, allowing germs to get in. Scratching puts you at risk for developing a bacterial skin infection.
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How Is Contact Dermatitis Treated
Most cases of contact dermatitis go away on their own once the substance is no longer in contact with the skin. Here are some tips you can try at home:
- Avoid scratching your irritated skin. Scratching can make the irritation worse or even cause a skin infection that requires antibiotics.
- Clean your skin with mild soap and lukewarm water to remove any irritants.
- Stop using any products you think might be causing the problem.
- Apply bland petroleum jelly like Vaseline to soothe the area.
- Try using anti-itch treatments such as calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream .
- If needed, take an antihistamine drug such as diphenhydramine to cut down on itching and to reduce your allergic response.
You can purchase these items at most drugstores or online.
Most times, contact dermatitis isnt cause for concern. However, you should seek medical attention if your rash is close to your eyes or mouth, covers a large area of your body, or doesnt improve with home treatment.
Your doctor can prescribe a more potent steroid cream if home treatments dont soothe your skin.
Contact your doctor if your symptoms are severe or dont improve with time. Your doctor will take a thorough medical history and examine your skin. Questions they may ask you include:
Your doctor may refer you to an allergy specialist or dermatologist to pinpoint the cause of your contact dermatitis. This specialist can perform allergy testing called a patch test. It involves exposing a small patch of your skin to an allergen.
How Is Allergic Eczema Diagnosed
Your doctor will first examine your skin to determine whether you have allergic eczema. If they suspect you have the condition, theyll need to do further testing to find out exactly what youre allergic to. In most cases, a patch test will be used.
If you need help finding a primary care doctor or allergist, you can browse doctors in your area through the Healthline FindCare tool.
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Figure 7 Enlarging Plaque With Raised Border Of Porokeratosis Of Mibelli
Focusing on the furrowed rim formed by the prominent border and depressed center is key in differentiating the lesion from other annular lesions like tinea. The large, ridge-like border can be accentuated with the application of colored dye, such as crystal violet or povidone-iodine, followed by removal with alcohol.31 In addition, questioning may reveal a family history of similar lesions. Definitive diagnosis can be made with biopsy and histopathological examination showing a cornoid lamella.29
Treatment consists of topical 5-fluorouracil alone or in combination with topical retinoids.30,31 Other possible approaches include cryotherapy with liquid nitrogen.29
Psoriasis is one of the most common skin conditions encountered by primary care physicians. The immune-mediated, hyperproliferative disorder affects approximately 2% of the U.S. population with equal frequency in men and women.32 Psoriasis can begin at any age, although the majority of cases occur in patients younger than 40 years of age.33
What Are The Types Of Skin Rashes
There are many different types of skin rashes, including:
- Contact dermatitis: This form of dermatitis occurs when your body reacts to a substance that it doesnt like. Lots of people are allergic to fragrances, preservatives, nickel and poison ivy. Common irritants include soaps, detergents, chemicals and household cleaners.
- Eczema: Also called atopic dermatitis, eczema often develops in infancy and often gets better as a child grows. It tends to run in families . People who have asthma or allergies are more likely to have eczema, too.
- Hives: Also called urticaria, hives cause raised, red, itchy skin welts. You may get hives if you have an allergic reaction to airborne allergens or insect stings. Extreme temperature changes and certain bacterial infections can also bring on hives.
- Psoriasis: This lifelong skin disorder causes a thick, scaly rash. The rash often forms on the elbows, knees, lower back, scalp and genitals. Psoriasis can be inherited.
- Viral: Skin rashes are a common symptom of many viral conditions, such as chickenpox, measles and molluscum contagiosum.
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When To Get Medical Advice
You should also seek medical advice if you think your skin may be infected. You may need treatment.
Your GP should be able to make a diagnosis just by examining the affected areas of skin. In some cases they may also ask questions or arrange some tests to rule out other conditions.
Your GP may refer you to a dermatologist if they’re unsure of the diagnosis or if you need patch testing.
When To Call The Doctor
- The prescribed antihistamine medicine does not relieve the itching.
- The hives or itching becomes worse or new symptoms develop.
- Your child develops hives after being stung by an insect or after taking a new medicine or eating a certain food. He may need an EpiPen® to treat a more serious reaction next time.
HH-I-82 11/89, Revised 11/17, Nationwide Childrens Hospital
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When To See A Healthcare Provider
Red spots on your skin can have many causes and you may not be able to figure out why you have them without seeing a provider. They can look at the appearance and severity of the rash, your medical history, and any underlying conditions you have.
In general, red flag symptoms along with red spots on your skin include:
- Severe pain or swelling
- Pus oozing from the rash
If you have red spots on your skin and “red flag symptoms,” seek medical care right away.
Figure 1 Multiple Oval
When the rash is localized to the trunk, axillae, or groin, it commonly is mistaken for tinea. Tinea rarely is as widespread, and its lesions generally exude more significant central clearing.12 A negative KOH preparation can be used to exclude tinea.
The classic presentation often is alarming to patients, prompting medical evaluation. However, treatment generally is not required, as the eruption spontaneously remits in three to eight weeks.12 If patients experience intense pruritus, second-generation antihistamines, topical corticosteroids, a short course of systemic corticosteroids, or narrowband ultraviolet B phototherapy can provide symptomatic relief.10
Erythema Annulare Centrifugum
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Treatment For Red Patches On Skin
Treatment for red patches on the skin will vary depending on what the underlying cause of the redness is. For mild cases, natural home care options might be available. Due to this varying causes, it is difficult to offer a general treatment option for red, blotched skin. It is, therefore, important to first diagnose the underlying cause of the redness before you can attempt to get rid of the symptom.
For most cases of skin redness such as eczema, calamine lotion may offer relief for the itching caused by the rash on the skin. If the red skin persists for more than a day, then oral antihistamine may be used. Topical ointments such as anti-itching creams and anti-inflammatories may also be used. For fungal or bacterial infection causing the red patches on the skin, antifungal and antibacterial creams or gel may help in treating the conditions respectively.
As mentioned, the red skin could also be caused by anxiety or high-stress level. If this is the case, then treating the condition will involve adopting relaxation techniques such as slow breathing and other activities such as yoga and meditation.
Aloe Vera a naturally occurring anti-inflammatory may get rid of the redness on the skin by taking down the inflammation and cooling the skin. You will also need to:
Choice Of Topical Corticosteroid
There are different strengths of topical corticosteroids that can be prescribed depending on the severity of your eczema. Discoid eczema usually needs a stronger type of corticosteroid than other types of eczema.
You might be prescribed a cream to be used on visible areas, such as face and hands, and an ointment to be used at night or for more severe flare-ups.
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Itchy Red Bumps Get Checked
These are just a few of the most common conditions that can cause your skin to become irritated, resulting in an itchy, red, or bumpy rash. Most of the conditions that cause itching and redness are not serious. But skin problems can be quite uncomfortable, and it can be difficult to figure out what has caused the rash just by looking at it. Seeing a dermatologist to get a proper diagnosis and treatment will make you much more comfortable, and in some cases it can stop you from getting very sick.