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6 inch, s-shaped red bruise on left upper back, no injury, no irritation, no pain, have multiple health conditions, COPD, osteoarthritis, neuropathy, ME. Reason?

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I have noticed a 6 inch, s-shaped red/bruise on my left upper back. I've not injured myself, and would not have known it was there, if I hadn't looked in a mirror to make sure my hair was straight. It was only then, that I noticed it. I haven't got any sense of irritation or pain, so it is completely unexplained. I do have multiple health conditions, yet this is something I've never had before. My other conditions are; COPD, Osteoarthritis, Neuropathy, ME. Should I see my physician, or is there a simple explanation for this 'bruise'? Please provide me with some ideas on what this could be. Thanks for any advice given.
Posted Wed, 11 Apr 2012 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 17 minutes later
Hello and thanks for the query.

Your question is a good one and I'll try to give you some information and reassurance regarding what is going on. As far as the bruise or red XXXXXXX on your upper back there are a couple of possible explanations.

The first thing we must consider was whether or not you sustained some kind of trauma which might have left this XXXXXXX there. This does not sound like it is the likely cause in your case since there is no associated soreness or tenderness.

The other possibility which could explain what is going on is that the area in question may represent a very mild fungal infection. Fungal skin infections are generally red in color and can vary as far as the intensity of the color. Typically they do not cause a significant amount of tenderness or pain and sometimes do not cause much itching as well.

As long as you otherwise feel fine we can probably differ on XXXXXXX physician right away and try a topical remedy instead. I would recommend that you obtain a tube of topical cloak time at your local pharmacy. If you have trouble finding this you can simply ask the pharmacist and tell him that you would like one of these.

I recommend that you apply the clotrimazole cream to the affected area three times daily for the next seven days. If you do not see a satisfactory resolution or at least some improvement of the area then I would consider seeing your both acceptable and informative. If you feel you have additional questions I would be happy to address them. I would also be happy to review a copy of the photograph if you're able to send one of the affected area. You can send this to my attention at YYYY@YYYY .

Best regards.

Dr. Galamaga
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: 6 inch, s-shaped red bruise on left upper back, no injury, no irritation, no pain, have multiple health conditions, COPD, osteoarthritis, neuropathy, ME. Reason? 12 hours later
Thank you, Dr. XXXXXXX for your response. In addition to my previous description of the bruising, (which is still there), I now have pain in my left arm, which is causing weakness when I try to do anything with it, and my hands are swollen with achy pains in my fingers, and the tips of my fingers are very, very painful. I am typing this with just my right hand, and although I am right-handed, it is awkward to type one-handed. My left arm is covered with tubular bandage, to try and offer it some warmth and rest, but doesn't seem to be doing very much, as yet. I have asked my Husband to apply some cream to my left upper back, where the bruising is, and he told me there are now more of these bruises, along the spine, at thoracic level. Should the cream be applied to all the bruises? There has not been any trauma to my back, to cause these marks. Are these new symptoms related to the suspected fungal infection which you suggested the first bruise could be? I am finding this whole thing very odd indeed. I look forward to receiving your further advice. Many thanks. Kind Regards, Georgina.
Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 11 hours later

At this point I really have to recommend that you go and see a physician for an evaluation. This bruising just does not make sense right now. It is possible that your platelet count could be low which could be contributing to this bruising and stranger symptoms would you describe. I really would not hesitate to go and get checked out right away your health is too important to risk waiting at this point.

Again I'm sorry that I am unable to exam you in person to give you more information and recommendations regarding what is going on and what should be done. It just does not look like a simple thing at this point and are really would love for you to see a physician and have some blood work done to confirm and rule out any worrisome possibilities at this point.

Again I thank you for your query. I hope you have found my response and suggestions to be helpful at this point. If you have any other questions or concerns please do not hesitate to ask and I will try to get back to you as soon as possible.


Dr. Robert.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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