Itchy rash all over legs
Hi, my friend is a 39-year-old woman who is complaining of an itchy rash all over her legs. She first noticed the rash after she went hiking through a wooded area 2 days ago. Upon inspection, I notice linear streaking that looks like a mild dermatitis. What is her condition, and how to get rid of it? Please help.
@Debraj Your friend’s rash is likely poison ivy, based on her history of recent outdoor activity. The goals of self treatment include protecting the area to prevent itching and excessive scratching, which may lead to open lesions or secondary skin infections. After exposure to the poison ivy plant, the patient should wash the affected area to remove any remaining allergens within 10 minutes of exposure. Although she is not likely to benefit from washing her skin 2 days after exposure, it is prudent to recommend her to wash exposed clothes to prevent the rash from spreading due to indirect contact. Because her rash is mild, it is recommended that she may apply cool compresses of either oatmeal bath or calamine lotion. The addition of menthol (0.25%) and phenol (1%) to the calamine lotion can also be an option to alleviate itching. The American Academy of Dermatology also recommends the use of topical steroids to relieve localized itching or swelling for mild cases of contact dermatitis.
Patients experiencing severe symptoms, (eg, having numerous bullae, extreme itching, irritation, or swelling of extremities); a rash covering more than 25% of total body surface area or affecting the face, eyes and eyelids, or genitals; and children younger than 2 years of age are not candidates for self-treatment and should be counseled to seek physician referral.