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Red Patches on Arms
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Red Patches on Arms

Hi all,

I posted a question regarding this issue a couple of days ago but the situation has changed since that time. OK so about two and a half weeks ago I noticed a dry spot of skin on my right upper arm. It wasn't discolored at first but then began to grow and become a salmon color. It has now grown to an area the size of a business card. It is very irregular in shape and is flat (i.s. not raised). It's covered in a thin flaky scale. I went to my GP to get a better idea of what it was. She told me it was ringworm (the irregular shape would seem to rule out ringworm) or a similar fungal infection. I question that diagnosis because I also have a small quarter sized area of deep redness on the extensor aspect of my left elbow. This too does not seem to be raised and is scaly but not flaky. Since the original patch appeared I've noticed several other areas of dryness on my arms and shoulders. There are now two additional, smaller areas of redness and flaking on my right shoulder and one near my left elbow. On my right arm are three very small spots of redness that appear to be exfoliating, but are not dry. There is another patch or dryness on my right arm that resembles the original one when if first developed.

As I have received a diagnosis of a fungal infection I have been prescribed a combination anti-fungal and cortisone cream to apply to the affected areas. I've been on treatment for just over 24 hours and have not seen a significant improvement. The flakiness and overall texture and color of the patches have improved but the size has not. I'm wondering if 1)  If this actually is a fungal infection (as I suspect it's not)  should I have had a better response from treatment at this early stage and 2) What suggestion would you have for an alternative diagnosis. (eczema, psoriasis, etc...)

Additional info: No family history of eczema or psoriasis. I recently drastically cut my alcohol consumption. I have moderate acne that is well treated and under control. I have a history of cellulitis and other dermatitises. I have not changed my diet or environment in any significant way during the onset of this condition. I am a heavy smoker (I know, I'm a fool for that).

I've been using Dr. Google (aka googling rashes - not helpful) and I can't seem to figure out what the heck is going on here. I can't find any condition that matches my symptoms. I have an appointment with a dermatologist on Friday but I'd like some thoughts from the community prior to then.  

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563773_tn?1374250139
Hello,
It is very difficult to confirm anything without examination but it seems like pityriasis rosea. Pityriasis rosea is a common human skin disease which presents as numerous patches of pink or red oval rash. The rash may be accompanied by low-grade headache, fever, nausea and fatigue and itching. Topical and oral steroids are needed. Water, sweat, and soap may cause irritation and should be avoided in the disease. Topical zinc oxide and calamine lotion are useful for pruritus.
It is very difficult to precisely confirm a diagnosis without examination and investigations and the answer is based on the medical information provided. For exact diagnosis, you are requested to consult your dermatologist. I sincerely hope that helps. Take care and please do keep me posted on how you are doing.

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Avatar_f_tn
Hi Brian, this sounds alot like what I have going on - if you get a chance read my post (chillytaurus) I just wanted to ask though, prior to the rash did you have a weird spot appear anywhere on your body that was round a bit larger then what you have now and itch slightly? because this is how mine started with a weird spot then about 2-3 weeks later I was and still am getting covered from the neck down in these spots that itch and do look alot like ring worm but MOST definitely are not. They spread but they are NOT contagious and they itch really bad. From what I looked up I believe it to be Pityriasis Rosea, but my doc appointment is the 23. Good Luck and if you find anything out please share.
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