How Do You Treat a Viral Infection Rash?


Quick Answer

A rash caused by viral infection normally resolves itself without medical intervention or treatment, according to DermNet NZ. In some cases, antivirals can be used to fight the virus causing the rash.

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Full Answer

Many viruses can cause a rash, along with other symptoms, reports MedicineNet. These viruses include many herpes viruses, which cause chickenpox, shingles and sexually-transmitted herpes sores. Rashes caused by viruses only last a from a few days to a couple weeks, and typically go away on their own without treatment. Rest is the most important treatment for these viral infections.

There are ways to manage the symptoms such as itching, burning and swelling when associated with a viral infection, explains eMedicineHealth. Over-the-counter anti-itch creams contain 1 percent hydrocortizone and are effective in relieving itchiness and dryness, according to MedicineNet. Oral antihistamines, which are available as over-the-counter products, are also effective in relieving itchiness by minimizing the immune system's overreaction to the virus. In extreme cases, when the rash covers most of the body, or is blistering or causing the face to swell, a short course of oral steroids such as Prednisone can be prescribed by a medical health professional. These mimic the chemicals produced naturally by the body, which causes a feedback loop that ultimately suppresses inflammation as well as the chemicals produced by the immune system causing it, according to Mayo Clinic.

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