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What is the cause for rashes and blotchy red mass on back?

Dec 2013
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Practicing since : 2002
Answered : 4168 Questions
Dear Doctor, I have had a rash on my back for about a week now. As per the photograph the spots are red and raised,Meitner spaced a few inches apart or in one small blotchy red mass on my back and shoulders. There are also a number of inexplicable scratches on my back including places that I can not reach. I was wondering if you had any ideas to what is causing the rash and scratches. I have very short nails (as I bite my nails) and am not capable of scratching myself to this extent. My fiancé has not caught the rash so it does not appear to be contagious. No other symptoms are apparent.
Posted Sat, 11 Jan 2014 in Skin Rash
Answered by Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia 1 hour later
Brief Answer: "Irritant/ Contact dermatitis" Detailed Answer: Hi, Welcome and thanks for posting your query to the forum. I can understand your concern for the rash over back. After reading your query and analyzing the pictures thoroughly I can make out the best possibility of "Irritant/ Contact dermatitis" or in simple words allergy to contact of some irritant material on back. To explain you elaborately about the possible condition - Due to exposure to any irritant material such as any creams or new cosmetic product or sometimes anything coming in contact with the areas can cause the problem. So there can be initial redness and itching with mild to moderate itching sensation. As we scratch it or due to exposure to environmental factors such as sunlight, sweating dust and hot humid climate, it can get aggravated. Even in some cases sunlight itself can act as main factor causing rash. This is a quite simple problem which we see in our day to day practice and persist for only the time till the aggravating factor is present. So the most important part in your management is avoidance of the aggravating factor enumerated all above. It is not contagious in nature so do not worry about the same. For the betterment kindly follow the suggestions below: 1. Avoid direct sunlight and hot – humid climate. 2. Wear cotton clothes and avoid synthetic clothes. 3. Stay in cool environment(preferably AC) and avoid sweating. 4. Take two time bath once in morning and at night time which will soothe your skin and prevent the aggravation of the problem 5. Do not Pinch pop or squeeze or rub any area. 6. Do not use any deodorants or any cosmetics over and near the affected area. 7. Do cold compression over the affected area. Take a wet towel soaked in cold water and apply it for 5-10 minutes for 3-4 times a day. For the part of treatment kindly follow the suggestions below: 1. Apply over the counter available calamine lotion on the affected area in day and afternoon time. Apply it in very thin layer. 2. Apply plane Mometasone or fluticasone cream in a thin layer in morning and at night time. Apply in a very thin layer so that it should not be visible to naked eye. You can apply it for 7 days and then stop it after that. 3. If there is any irritation or itching is present then can take tablet “Loratadine” or "Deslotatadine" tablet by mouth up to three to four times also if the itching is more. If the rash is not decreasing in next 48 hours or is increasing then you can meet a dermatologist and appraise my suggestions. I hope these information's will help you. If you have further queries I will be happy to help. "Wish you good health" Regards, Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia MD (Dermatology)
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