What Do Skin Rashes Look Like?


Quick Answer

Various skin rashes produce visual symptoms such as discoloration, blisters, inflammation and small bumps, notes WebMD. Rashes may cause scaly and dry areas on the skin, and affected areas sometimes appear as small, circular patches.

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What Do Skin Rashes Look Like?
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Full Answer

A common rash called atopic eczema appears differently from one individual to another, but generally causes reddish, dry skin patches in flexible areas, such as the inside of the elbow and the back of the knee, explains WebMD. Eczema may cause small blisters that itch; scratching causes them to ooze fluid. Granuloma annulare is a chronic rash that causes the appearance of round, reddish bumps. These usually appear on the hands, forearms and feet, and they may create a mild itching sensation.

Lichen planus is a common rash that creates flat bumps with an angular shape, states WebMD. These appear as shiny red or purple spots on the wrists, the ankles, the back, the neck and the lower legs. Lichen planus sometimes occurs on toenails or fingernails, in the mouth, and in the genital area. Pityriasis rosea is a mild rash that usually starts with a large patch of scaly skin on the back or chest. This patch may be itchy and discolored, and more spots usually follow.

Doctors advise antihistamines to reduce itching caused by a rash, notes WebMD. Some rashes respond favorably to sunlight or sun lamps. Health professionals may prescribe steroids and drugs that suppress the body's immune response. In some cases, doctors use liquid nitrogen to freeze bumps on the skin.

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