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Pityriasis Rosea - Symptoms and Treatment

Pityriasis rosea is a rash that occurs most commonly in people between the ages of 10 and 35, but may occur at any age. Usually there are no permanent marks as a result of this condition, although some darker-skinned persons may develop long-lasting flat brown spots that eventually fade. Pityriasis rosea (PR) is an acute and characteristic exanthem that has been described for more than 2 centuries. Pityriasis rosea is a common skin disease. The rash can last from several weeks to several months. This appears as a single, large pinkish, reddish, or brownish-colored patch that is round to oval in shape and slightly raised. The way the rash looks may differ from person to person. Pityriasis rosea is uncommon in those over 60 years old. It most often develops in the spring and the fall, and seems to favor adolescents and young adults. It exact cause is unknown and its onset is not linked to food, medicines or stress, it is thought that this essentially non-contagious condition is set off by a virus . However, it is most common in females and those between the ages of 8 and 35. Pityriasis rosea, often misspelled and mispronounced, is a skin disease, usually mild, that is quite common in individuals between 10 - 35 years of age, although it is not limited to this age group.

Pityriasis rosea is a skin rash caused by a virus. It starts with a large scaled spot called a ‘herald patch', which is then followed within a week by clusters of smaller patches. It tends to be common in autumn and spring, and young adults particularly women - are most susceptible. Characterized by scaly, pink, inflamed skin, the condition can last from four to eight weeks and usually leaves no lasting marks. The disease usually begins with a single herald or mother patch, usually larger than succeeding lesions. Pityriasis rosea can occur at any age, however, it occurs most often in teenagers and young adults. It is characterized by a single round spot on the body, followed later by a rash of colored spots on the body and upper arms. The eruption is usually generalized, affecting chiefly the trunk, and sparing sun-exposed surfaces. It is classified as a papulosquamous disorder, which means that its lesions are marked by small raised areas (papules) as well as scaly areas. Pityriasis rosea is a harmless skin disease marked by patches of pink, oval rash that sometimes itch over the torso, neck, arms and legs. The oval patches follow the line of the ribs like a fir tree. Pityriasis rosea usually avoids the face, although sometimes a few spots spread to the cheeks. Although pityriasis rosea has a distinctive appearance once the rash appears, in its early stages you may confuse pityriasis rosea with other skin disorders, such as ringworm or eczema.

Causes of Pityriasis Rosea

Common Causes of Pityriasis Rosea :

  • Weather condition is the main cause of pityriasis rosea. It occurs most commonly in the fall and spring.
  • It is not highly contagious .
  • Experts suggest that it may be caused by a virus.
  • Medicines such as bismuth , barbiturates , captopril , gold , organic mercurials , methoxypromazine , metronidazole, D-penicillamine, isotretinoin, tripelennamine hydrochloride, ketotifen, and salvarsan may also cause this disease.
  • Pityriasis rosea may occur in more than one person in a household at a time, but it is not contagious that is there is no need to avoid the patient meeting other healthy person.
  • It is not an allergic reaction or caused by a fungus or bacteria.

Symptoms of Pityriasis Rosea

Some Common Symptoms of Pityriasis Rosea :

  • Itching.
  • Skin redness.
  • Skin lesion or rash.
  • Headaches.
  • Fatigue.
  • Aches.

Treatment of Pityriasis Rosea

Some Common Treatment of Pityriasis Rosea :

  • Avoid using soap as this can irritate the rash.
  • Oral antihistamines may help in cases of severe itching.
  • The rash of pityriasis rosea is irritated by soap; bathe or shower with plain water. The rash makes the skin dry; it helps to put a thin coating of bath oil on your freshly dried skin after a shower or bath.
  • Bathe using plain water or some kind of moisturiser, such as bath oil.
  • If the rash itches, treatment with a cortisone cream usually brings prompt relief. The cortisone does not cure pityriasis rosea; it will only make you more comfortable while getting over the rash.
  • Mild moisturising creams can be applied generously and often.








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