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Dr. Nair
Dr. Nair, Dermatologist
Category: Dermatology
Satisfied Customers: 9190
Experience:  MBBS, MD (Dermatology, Venereology & Leprology)
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Very itchy red rash, diagnosed as German measles then Rosea, help!

Customer Question

I have a red very itchy rash that started around my neck, moved town to my torso, now on my scalp & hairline & little on my back. Went to my local GP and he initially thought it was German Measles, then after 4 Days re-diagnosed it as pityriasis rosea.

The rash has NOT spread to my legs, feet or palms, and is itching like crazy! The rash lvaries between 1mm diameter to about 1cm diameter reddish bumps (not huge blotches, but small reddish bumps) with some that has a pimple like tiny white spot in the middle - this might be from scrathching them though.

My concern is that pityriasis rosea should start with one big red "herald patch" and this I did not notice. It is getting worse day-by-day at the moment and is causing me alot of dis-comfort. Could anyone help please?

Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Dermatology
Expert:  Dr. Nair replied 6 years ago.

Can you take a photograph of the rash at your convenience?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Expert:  Dr. Nair replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for the photographs - I can make out that some of the red bumps have darker centers, is this accurate?

Have you ever had cold sores in the past?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Hi. This is true but only for the bumps around my nech, most of the others are the same colour all around. The ones in my neck are more itchy probably due to my collar schaffing them, so I do tend to scratch them more.

I have had cold sores in the past (primarily in my mouth)

To add additional info, I did have a cold about two weeks ago with a slimy cough, which I took broad spectrum antibiotics for which promptly went away - Bumps started appearing a couple of days after I finished my Antibiotic course. Additionally I had been bitten by a tic (beginning of Jan 2011) but did not get sick (except for the flu - dont know if this helps of confuses the diagnosis?!?).

Expert:  Dr. Nair replied 6 years ago.

Thank you for the information. You have something called Erythema Multiforme. This is a rash which can be cause due to a number of reasons but 70-80% of the time is seen in patients with a history of cold sores. Here is a link to understanding the condition better:

This rash is always self limiting and will subside in a couple of weeks. No specific treatment is required - just apply calamine lotion twice a day over the rash and take Tab Claritin 10 mg twice a day for the itching.

Hope this information is useful!