ZocdocAnswersWhy do I get small tiny bumps on inside of my arms randomly?

Question

Why do I get small tiny bumps on inside of my arms randomly?

I'm a 28 year old single female and since high school, I notice I get random small little raised red bumps on the inner inside of my arms. Is this something to be concerned about? They come and go randomly and I've always assumed they were due to changing fabric softener, detergent, etc. They rarely itch.

Answer

There are several possibilities here. On possibility, which you have already mentioned, is that you have a periodic allergic or contact reaction to some soap or chemical that you are coming in contact with. The fact that they do not itch makes this slightly less likely, but if you notice any association with a particular exposure, you could avoid that. Another possibility would be that you have periodic folliculitis. This is a condition in which the bases of the hair shafts becomes infected by bacteria leading to red bumps around the hair shafts. These can generally just be treated with good skin hygiene and with perhaps a small amount of topical antibiotic ointment. A third possibility would be something called keratosis pilaris, which is an inherited benign condition in which the skin produces excess keratin protein which periodically can plug up pores leading to small red bumps on the upper arms. This condition usually does not be treated. If the symptoms are worsening or bothersome to you in any way, you should talk to your primary care doctor who will be able to diagnose what is going on and help you determine whether or not any specific treatment is needed.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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