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red rash on torso
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red rash on torso

About 10 days ago I developed a red rash on my upper chest.  It starts as small red dots which gradually grow in size to about 1/4 inch in diameter.  They are flat red spots that feel slightly rough to the touch.  (Looks a little like chicken pox, or mosquito bites - but not really raised.) At first it seemed isolated to just the skin area directly underneath my bra (breasts), but it has since spread to my stomach and my sides, and even my neck.  The spots that were there 10 days ago have not gone away, but every day more spots show up.  They seem to be concentrated in places where my clothing makes the closest contact with my skin - my bra, my pants waistline.  The spots are not especially itchy, and they do not hurt.  Sometimes I feel a prickly sensation, especially after showering or if I am feeling warm.  The rash does not seem to be contagious, as I live with my fiance and he has not developed any signs of this rash.  Any ideas on what it could be, and suggestions for treatment?  I have tried moisturizer, benadryl cream, and aloe gel, none of which have had any effect.
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242489_tn?1210500813
Janie:

Generalized red rashes like the one you describe are usually viral, less usually allergic (as to a medication, not to a soap or detergent.)  If you are not taking any new medications or other pills (like vitamins), then allergy is unlikely.

Since you are still getting new spots after 10 days, I think you ought to show this rash to a doctor over the next couple of days.  Blood tests, or possibly a skin biopsy may be helpful in specifying what you have, and then directing treatment.

It may be that the condition will ending up limiting itself and going away, but the rash sounds impressive and long-lasting enough to warranr a physician's having a look.

Best.

Dr. Rockoff
9 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
After you have the doctor look at your rashes, consider "contact dermatitis" from your laundry detergent.

Switch to an UNSCENTED laundry detergent and rinse 2 extra times. See if this helps.

Sincerely, Concerned lady

***@****
http://cantbreathesuspectvcd.com
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Avatar_n_tn
Thank you.  I saw a doctor yesterday and she told me it is something called pityriasis rosea - caused by a virus, not serious, goes away on its own.
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242489_tn?1210500813
Great news.  Nobody's ever proved that pityriasis is an infection, even though it looks a bit like one.  Thanks for the follow-up.

Dr. Rockoff
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242489_tn?1210500813
Great news.  Nobody's ever proved that pityriasis is an infection, even though it looks a bit like one.  Thanks for the follow-up.

Dr. Rockoff
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Avatar_n_tn
Was wondering if your rash had improved in the last 5 weeks.
If not it may well be a zoonotic condition, which is what it seemed like on first read.   I would like to hear how you are doing in any case.  But if not much improved this is another possibility for you to evaluate.  

Regards, Bea
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Avatar_n_tn
Three weeks after I started a new job, I began getting a red rash on the front of my legs.  I also had a flu shot, and had a terrible reaction from that where my arm swelled up, got red and hot.  Didn't get better for 5 days.  Red rash, which seems to get worse every day, has spread all over my body.  It is unsightly and I seemed to get a little better after a weekend at home.  Now it seems to be there all the time.  The red spots actually look like they have lines of hemorraging from one spot to the other and there are new spider veins on my legs that are red, too.  All of the red dots eventually turn to brown and stay brown.  It looks terrible as I have always had perfect skin.  Never even had acne as a teenager.  I tend to think it comes from the place where I work, as when I come in each morning, and especially over the weekend, there is a strong chemical smell.  There is a large hole in the wall above me which goes to nothing but the other parts of the building (I'm next door to a printing company).  This is an old warehouse turned into half warehouse and half office.  There is also an old janitor's sink 4 ft. from my desk.  There are no windows, so I open the "garage type" door and leave it partly open all day.  This gets worse sometmes and I also have cramps in my legs, feet and neck at times.  Headaches have started now in the past few weeks (I have been there since Sept. 25, 2001).  My dermatologist sent me to Occupational Health Doctor and he looked at one arm and one shoulder and said it looked like sun damage.  It is driving me crazy with itching and just the looks of it.  Especially my face and chest.
Has anyone else ever had such a thing.  My boss seems to think I've lost it, but I can't wear my new New Year's dress because my chest is covered with hemorraging and red dots and brown spots.
Help, someone!
Doodle
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Avatar_n_tn
I was reading through your description of pityriasis rosea and my case sounds similar.  I have been to the local health clinic twice.  The first time they gave me lotion for eczema and now I am on a prescription for viral infections.  However, neither of these remedies are helping eliminate the spread of the rash.  Is it possible to aquire this pityriasis rosea without any larger patches but simply small speckled flat bumps?  Also, my rashes are itchy and spread as I itch them.  Any ideas on this would be very helpful...Thank you!
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Avatar_n_tn
I was reading through your description of pityriasis rosea and my case sounds similar.  I have been to the local health clinic twice.  The first time they gave me lotion for eczema and now I am on a prescription for viral infections.  However, neither of these remedies are helping eliminate the spread of the rash.  Is it possible to aquire this pityriasis rosea without any larger patches but simply small speckled flat bumps?  Also, my rashes are itchy and spread as I itch them.  Any ideas on this would be very helpful...Thank you!
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