Overview of pityriasis rosea
Pityriasis rosea is a rash that usually begins as a large round or oval patch on your chest, abdomen, or back. This spot, called the noble patch, can be up to 4 inches (10 cm) wide. The noble spot is usually followed by smaller spots that sweep from the center of your body in a shape similar to the drooping of pine branches.
It can affect any age. It most commonly occurs between the ages of 10 and 35. It usually resolves on its own within 10 weeks. This can be itchy. Treatment may help relieve symptoms.
What causes pityriasis rosea?
Pityriasis rosea is associated with the reactivation of herpesvirus 6 and 7, which cause the primary rash in infants. Influenza viruses and vaccines have caused pityriasis rosea in some cases.
This may rarely appear as an adverse reaction to a medication. Reactivation of herpes 6/7 has been accounted for in some however not all instances of medication initiated pityriasis rosea. The rash that resembles pityriasis rosea is caused by ACE inhibitors, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, hydrochlorothiazide, imatinib, clozapine, metronidazole, terbinafine, gold, and atypical antipsychotics.
Symptoms of pityriasis rosea
Pityriasis rosea usually begins as a large, slightly raised scaly patch called the primary patch on your back, chest, or stomach. Before the initial spot appears, some people have a headache, fatigue, fever, or sore throat.
A couple of days to half a month after the honorable spot shows up, you may see little, layered spots on your back, chest, or midsection that look like a pine tree design. The rash can sometimes be very itchy.
It can look like a common rash. Examples include eczema, ringworm, and psoriasis. Your doctor will look for the initial spot and review symptoms. They may do a blood test or skin biopsy to rule out other problems.
What is the treatment option for pityriasis rosea?
It is usually self-limiting, does not require any treatment, and resolves spontaneously. Treatment is not necessary if the rash is not causing significant symptoms. This is usually going away on its own within six to nine weeks without medical intervention.
The most common symptom is itching, which can be treated with over-the-counter topical steroid creams (such as hydrocortisone cream) and oral antihistamines (such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl) and cetirizine (Zyrtec)). These will not shorten the duration of the rash but will reduce itching. Another treatment for itching is ultraviolet (UVB) rays of sunlight. In general, the best treatment is to avoid overheating by minimizing exercise and avoiding hot showers.
There was limited evidence of the reduced duration of rosacea with unauthorized use of the antibiotic erythromycin or use of antiviral drugs such as acyclovir (Zovirax) or famciclovir (Famvir). However, none of these drugs are uniformly effective in treating pityriasis rosea and are not usually necessary or required.
What home cures would I be able to use for pityriasis rosea?
Home solutions for pityriasis rosea incorporate washing up or showers, maintaining a strategic distance from cleanser drying, wearing cotton or silk garments to lessen the warmth, and scrubbing down. Calamine or menthol anti-itch preparations can also be helpful for itching. Here are additional home remedies:
- Lubricate with gentle moisturizers
- Steroid creams (hydrocortisone cream)
- Diphenhydramine (Benadryl) oral tablet or itchy liquid
- Natural sun exposure to body parts, 10-15 minutes a day
Because no one knows what causes rosacea, there is no way to prevent it. It does not appear to be contagious.
The outlook is excellent. Most cases clear up within two months. The rash rarely returns. Although some people, especially those with darker complexions, experience some skin discoloration from the skin blemishes, it fades with time. In general, there are no permanent effects.