Which infectious conditions cause red spots?
Some of the common infections that cause red spots include:
- Fungal infections like ringworm: A ringworm looks like a ring of red spots that surrounds a clear area. Treatment involves anti-fungal ointments and medications.
- Shingles: They are medically known as herpes zoster. Shingles is a painful rash that can present with blisters that are formed on one side of the face or body. Since it is a viral rash, it is treated by anti-viral oral pills.
- Roseola infantum: Roseola infantum is a viral infection that occurs in babies and causes a high fever followed by a rash. There is no specific treatment for roseola infantum. Most cases of roseola infantum are mild and self-limited. Treatment involves rest, adequate fluid intake, and medications to control the fever.
- Erythema infectiosum or Fifth disease: A viral infection that commonly occurs during childhood. Signs and symptoms include a red rash on the cheeks that resemble a slapped cheek, fever, sore throat, stomach upset, and headache. Generally, no treatment for the Fifth disease is necessary. An antihistamine can be used if the rash is itchy.
- Viral diseases, such as measles, rubella, chickenpox, and COVID-19: Each of these conditions is associated with its own signs and symptoms. It is advisable to contact a doctor for the correct diagnosis and treatment.
Which allergic conditions cause red spots?
Some of the common allergic conditions with red spots are:
- Contact dermatitis: Allergy to latex, an insect (mosquitoes, ticks) bite, and diapers (diaper rash in children) are examples of contact dermatitis. Treatment involves the use of oral pills of antihistamines and creams for local applications to relieve the itch, such as a calamine lotion or moisturizer mixed with a steroid (hydrocortisone).
- Food allergies: People may have an allergy to certain foods, which can appear as rashes. The most common foods are fish, shellfish, peanuts, and tree nuts like walnuts. Problem foods for children can include eggs, milk, peanuts, soy, and wheat.
- Drug rash: A sudden allergic reaction to any medicine can appear in the form of a rash. It is advisable to contact the doctor who will consider your medical history and prescribe an alternate medicine.
- Atopic dermatitis: It often starts in babies and can either go away with age or stay permanently with flares throughout life. Atopic dermatitis treatment is aimed at managing flares and keeping the skin moisturized.
- Poison ivy, poison oak, or poison sumac rash: Touching any of these plants results in blistering red spots with intense itching all over the body in most people. The red spots usually subside on their own within 7 to 21 days. Treatment includes washing the affected part with lukewarm or soapy water, applying Calamine lotion, and taking antihistamine medications to relieve the itch.
What are the other conditions that cause red spots?
The other common conditions that cause red spots but not because of any allergy or infection include:
Heat rash: Red spots caused by over-exposure to the sun or heat are known as heat rash. Treatment involves applying a soothing lotion, such as Calamine lotion or aloe vera. Preventive measures include applying sunscreen lotion before venturing out and wearing full sleeve tops.
Swimmer itch: Swimmer itch is a rash that comes from being in the water where certain infected snails are present. It normally subsides on its own in about a week and medical treatment is generally not needed.
Acne rosacea: A chronic skin condition in which a red rash appears most commonly on the cheeks and around the nose. The disease is characterized by flares that are triggered by a variety of factors. A doctor will be able to suggest the most effective treatments.
Pityriasis rosea: A scaly reddish-pink rash that sweeps outward like the branches of a pine tree. It commonly appears mostly on the chest, abdomen, and back and is most common in people between 10 to 35 years of age. Treatment includes antihistamine pills.
Psoriasis: Psoriasis appears as silvery or red, scaly, itchy rashes, most commonly over the knee joints, elbows, fingers, and toes. There are several types of psoriasis and each appears slightly different than the other. Treatments involve the application of creams and medications to the skin, light therapy, and injectable medications.
Petechiae: These are red spots that appear due to the rupture of tiny blood vessels (capillaries) under the skin. These may happen in:
- Rickettsia infection (rocky mountain spotted fever)
- Scarlet fever
- Strep throat
- Vitamin C deficiency
- Vitamin K deficiency
If the red spots cause severe discomfort and are associated with fever or unusual signs, it is vital to consult a doctor who can diagnose the condition and start the treatment immediately.
Latest Skin News
Daily Health News
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Petechiae. Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/petechiae/basics/causes/sym-20050724
Slide show: Common skin rashes. Available at: https://www.mayoclinic.org/skin-rash/sls-20077087
Top Causes and Treatment of Red Spots on Skin Related Articles
How Long Is Shingles Contagious?Shingles is contagious from the time the blisters are oozing until the time the blisters have scabbed.
Is Shingles Contagious?Shingles is an infection caused by the varicella-zoster virus. Shingles symptoms and signs include skin burning, numbness, and tingling along with a painful red, blistering rash. Shingles is contagious until all of the blisters have crusted over.
Non-Itchy Red Spots: 20 Skin DisordersMost of the red spots on the skin are itchy. However, some do not itch. Enlisted here are 20 common skin disorders that cause red spots without itching.
Ringworm SlideshowWhat is ringworm? How do you get rid of ringworm? View ringworm pictures and learn about ringworm treatment, causes, symptoms, types, and prevention tips for this fungal skin infection.
Is Ringworm Contagious Quiz
ShinglesShingles, or herpes zoster, is a painful rash caused by the varicella zoster virus. Other shingles symptoms include headache, fever, nausea, and body aches. Treatment focuses on pain management and shortening the duration of the illness with antiviral medications.
Shingles QuizShingles falls within a well-known family of viruses that cause itching, burning, blisters, and pain. Take the Shingles Quiz to get the facts, causes, symptoms, and treatments for this itchy, painful condition.
Shingles PicturesAn acute infection caused by the herpes zoster virus, the same virus as causes chickenpox. See a picture of Shingles and learn more about the health topic.
ShinglesShingles occurs when the varicella-zoster virus, the same virus that causes chickenpox, re-emerges due to a weakened immune system. Tingling may occur before herpes zoster blisters appear, usually on the side of the body. The shingles vaccine can boost the immune system to lower the risk of shingles outbreaks.
Skin Problems: Rosacea, Acne, Shingles, Covid-19 RashesLearn to spot and treat skin conditions commonly found in adults such as acne, Covid-19 rashes, eczema, shingles, psoriasis, rosacea, hives, cold sores, razor bumps, athlete's foot, and more dermatology details.
What Causes You to Get Shingles?Shingles (herpes zoster) is caused by varicella zoster virus, the same virus that causes chickenpox. Sometimes, in patients with a history of chickenpox, the virus may live in the nervous system for years in an inactive form, and then reactivate as shingles.