Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Do I have a rash or something more serious?"
After playing some basketball with some friends I came home and had what looked like a bunch of little mosquito bites on my thighs and groin area. It went away but now it is popping up again. Is this just a heat rash or is it something more serious?
There are several potential causes of this rash. If it persists or worsens, you should definitely see your primary care doctor, as they will be able to help figure out whether this is something that needs treatment. Heat rash is high on the list of possibilities. This occurs when the sweat glands in the skin become clogged, usually due to heavy sweating during exercise. The appearance is of small red bumps on the skin that are not usually painful. Heat rash is typically treated just with good skin hygiene. Another possibility would be folliculitis, which is a condition caused by infection of the hair shafts. Folliculitis is associated with sweating and friction over the skin. It also causes red bumps, but they tend to be larger than heat rash bumps and perhaps mildly painful. Again skin hygiene is important, but more persistent cases may require antibiotics, especially if the redness spreads or if the rash becomes more uncomfortable. Start by seeing your primary care doctor. They can examine the rash and determine if it needs treatment. If it is just heat rash, they will probably just encourage good skin care, but if there is any signs of an infection they may prescribe a medication.
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