What is this rash?
July 2, 2012 12:01 PM   Subscribe

YANAD, but might you have some insight into this strange rash?

I realize you are not a doctor, though I am on the move right now and won't be able to see a dermatologist until next month.

My girlfriend thought the strange rash that she has had since her childhood (before she was sexual active) was not contagious, and therefore failed to mention it to me. This rash presides in her nether regions, and was passed along to me. She said she had it checked out when she was little, though with inconclusive results. It now comes and goes and she pays little attention to it, though it does on occasion bother her.

It originally made itself present in a few places along my pubic region and up towards my stomach. I had it checked out by the university health center, and they too were unsure. They swabbed it and it came back negative for herpes. It then went away, then about a week later one spot appeared next to my belly button. That then went away, and it showed up in one armpit. That then went away, and it came back again in the same armpit. It went away once more, and has since reappeared in the same spot. Apparently this virus likes my armpit.

The rash itself appears as one, or two, or a few red spots. They on occasion though rarely fill with puss, though always blister and leave a sore open wound. It is rather uncomfortable and a bit painful.

Pictures of the current rash can be found here.

Might you have any idea what this is? Is there anything you suggest I do to minimize the discomfort?

posted by masters2010 to Health & Fitness (10 answers total)
posted by ZaneJ. at 12:26 PM on July 2, 2012

I don't know what it is, but I don't think it's scabies. Scabies starts on the back of your wrists (typically) and itches like a mo-fo (thank you French youth hostel). Luckily a bit of Kwell got rid of it.

Have you tried hydrocortisone creams? I find them to be amazing for most rashes.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 12:45 PM on July 2, 2012

Ringworm, perhaps? (It's not a worm, it's a fungus.) You may wanna try over-the-counter antifungal stuff on it... won't hurt, might help. Cortisone cream will also probably help alleviate the nastiness of it a bit.
posted by julthumbscrew at 12:47 PM on July 2, 2012

Possibly...jock itch? I don't think it normally blisters, but it usually occurs in damp places (like crotch, armpit, bellybutton...)
posted by shortyJBot at 1:06 PM on July 2, 2012

I'm no Dr., but I have had similar from a under-chlorinated hot tubs. Folliculitis?
posted by robi at 1:34 PM on July 2, 2012

Scabies doesn't always start on the back of your wrists. -voice of experience-
posted by annsunny at 4:19 PM on July 2, 2012

IANAD, but it looks like a staph infection to me. (No, not all staph infections are super scary flesh eating disease ones.) Especially the way you describe it and the fact that your g/f has had it since childhood. Staph infections of keratosis pilaris aren't uncommon and it IS common to have keratosis pilaris from a young age. Anywhere where body hair grows.

Google "Staph infections and keratosis pilaris" for more info to see if it fits. Do NOT go looking at the images for that search -- they're only showing extremes and/or non-related results for me when I tried that. (I'm assuming you can tell what's a "good" medical site from a non-credible one.)
posted by INTPLibrarian at 6:24 PM on July 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

I'm going to chime in on staph as well. I had a boyfriend that had staph issues, and believe me, it's pretty contagious. Can you go to a more well equipped medical facility and have them look at it?
posted by The Light Fantastic at 7:27 PM on July 2, 2012

Another vote here for staph. Also had a boyfriend who was prone to it.
posted by Specklet at 9:59 PM on July 2, 2012

Thanks for the responses. Staph seems like a good fit, though the doctor said otherwise. I paid $75 to go to a walk in clinic, only to have him look at for 5 minutes and tell me he had no idea. He said he didn't think that staph fit...it's gotten worse today, also. Not sure I can get a dermatologist appointment before I go to south america...
posted by masters2010 at 8:07 AM on July 3, 2012

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