RASHES, LOCALIZED AND CAUSE UNKNOWN
one part of the body (localized or clustered).
Red or pink rash.
Small spots, large spots or solid red.
skin contact with some irritant.
Other Common Causes: 8 rashes that you may be able to
recognize are listed below. If you suspect one of them, go there. If
not, use this guideline.
See More Appropriate Topic for a
Non-Itchy Rash If
See More Appropriate
Topic for an Itchy Rash If
WHEN TO CALL YOUR DOCTOR FOR RASHES,
LOCALIZED AND CAUSE UNKNOWN
Call 911 Now (your child may need an ambulance)If
or too weak to stand
Call Your Doctor Now (night or day) If
looks or acts very sick.
Purple or blood-colored spots or dots that's not from injury
Bright red area or red streak (but not sunburn).
Rash area is very painful.
Age less than 1 month old and tiny water blisters (like chickenpox).
Call Your Doctor Within 24 Hours (between 9am and 4pm)
your child needs to be seen.
Severe itching or fever is present.
Looks like a boil, infected sore, pimples or other infected
Teenager with genital area rash.
Call Your Doctor During Weekday Office Hours If
other questions or concerns.
Rash lasts for more than 7 days.
Parent Care at Home If
rash and you don't think your child needs to be seen.
HOME CARE ADVICE FOR LOCALIZED
- Avoid the Cause: Try
to find the cause. Consider irritants like a plant (e.g., poison ivy),
chemicals (e.g., solvents or insecticides), fiberglass, detergents, a new cosmetic,
or new jewelry). A pet may be the intermediary (e.g., with poison ivy
or oak) or your child may react directly to pet saliva.
Avoid Soap: Wash the area once thoroughly with soap to
remove any remaining irritants. Thereafter avoid soaps to this area. Cleanse
the area when needed with warm water.
Local Cold: Apply or soak in cold water for 20 minutes
every 3 to 4 hours to reduce itching or pain.
Steroid Cream: If the itch is more than mild, apply 1%
hydrocortisone cream (no prescription needed) every 2 hours until it feels better,
then 4 times per day. (Exception: suspected ringworm.)
Avoid Scratching: Encourage the child not to scratch.
Cut the fingernails short.
Contagiousness: Children with localized rashes do not
need to miss any day care or school.
Expected Course: Most of these rashes pass in 2 to 3 days.
Call Your Doctor If:
Rash spreads or becomes worse.
Rash lasts for more than 1 week.
Your child becomes worse or develops any of the "Call Your
information is not intended be a substitute for professional medical
advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full
responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Pediatric HouseCalls Online. Copyright © 2000-2004
Barton Schmitt, M.D. FAAP
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