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Skin rashes can occur for a wide range of reasons, many of which may require medical help to diagnose. When accompanied by other symptoms, such as dry skin and chills, the possible causes can be narrowed down, although multiple options remain. This combination of symptoms can be caused by diseases, allergic reactions, heat rash or contact dermatitis, for example.
Symptoms of Skin Problems
A rash is often a reaction by the skin to contact with a chemical or environmental substance. The rash, along with itching and chills, may occur in response to irritants such as perfume or skin-care products. This cluster of symptoms also can be signs of heat rash, which is generally caused by prolonged exposure to extremely hot weather conditions. Topical treatments may help reduce the discomfort of the symptoms in such cases; antihistamines and acetominophen also may be helpful. Patients usually are advised to avoid the substances that caused the reactions.
- A rash is often a reaction by the skin to contact with a chemical or environmental substance.
- The rash, along with itching and chills, may occur in response to irritants such as perfume or skin-care products.
Allergic Rash From Antibiotics
These combined symptoms also can be signs of an allergic reaction to medication. If these symptoms show up soon after taking a new medication, talk to your doctor. She may be able to recommend another medication that can be effective for your initial condition without causing the allergic reaction. According to the site Chemocare.com, dry skin and rashes are common in cancer patients, who may suffer reactions to the strong substances used in chemotherapy 1. In some cases an alternative anti-cancer drug may be an option, but generally only palliative measures are used for the allergy symptoms so that the patient can continue the chemotherapy.
- These combined symptoms also can be signs of an allergic reaction to medication.
- If these symptoms show up soon after taking a new medication, talk to your doctor.
Symptoms of Disease
A skin rash can be a symptom of infection or disease. When combined with dry skin and chills, physicians may narrow the diagnosis to a viral or bacterial infection; the latter may respond to treatment with antibiotics. The cause may be a disease such as shingles, which regularly manifests with this combination of symptoms. A case of shingles is caused by the same virus that causes chicken pox; it can be painful and persistent, and medical intervention is recommended. Other, more serious conditions, such as HIV, can cause the same group of symptoms. Seek immediate medical attention if symptoms are accompanied by sores that do not heal, fever, weakness in the limbs, or dizziness.
- A skin rash can be a symptom of infection or disease.
- The cause may be a disease such as shingles, which regularly manifests with this combination of symptoms.
Diagnosing Your Symptoms
HIV Skin Symptoms
The combination of skin rash, itchy skin and chills is not always serious and may sometimes resolve on its own. However, since this symptom cluster may signal more serious conditions, it is a good idea to seek medical advice if this group of symptoms recurs or persists. If the symptoms themselves do not respond to simple remedies, such as ointments or pain relief medications, your doctor may perform some tests to determine whether you have a more serious underlying condition.
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- Chemocare.com: Skin Reactions
- University of Iowa: Health Topics -- Winter Dry Skin
- FamilyDoctor.org: Skin Rashes and Other Changes
- The American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. Skin Allergies.
- Eichenfield LF, Ahluwalia J, Waldman A, et al. Current guidelines for the evaluation and management of atopic dermatitis: A comparison of the Joint Task Force Practice Parameter and American Academy of Dermatology guidelines. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2017;139(4S):S49-S57. doi:10.1016/j.jaci.2017.01.009
- Smith AR, Knaysi G, Wilson JM, Wisniewski JA. The Skin as a Route of Allergen Exposure: Part I. Immune Components and Mechanisms. Curr Allergy Asthma Rep. 2017;17(1):6. doi:10.1007/s11882-017-0674-5
- Bernstein JA, Lang DM, Khan DA, et al. The diagnosis and management of acute and chronic urticaria: 2014 update. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2014;133(5):1270-7. doi:10.1016/j.jaci.2014.02.036
- Siegfried EC, Hebert AA. Diagnosis of Atopic Dermatitis: Mimics, Overlaps, and Complications. J Clin Med. 2015;4(5):884-917. doi:10.3390/jcm4050884
- Fonacier L, Bernstein DI, Pacheco K, et al; American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology; American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology; Joint Council of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Contact dermatitis: a practice parameter-update 2015. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract. 2015;3(3 Suppl):S1-39. doi:10.1016/j.jaip.2015.02.009
- Tilles SA. Allergic Skin Disease and the Practicing Allergist: Growing Unmet Need, New Science, and New Treatments. Immunol Allergy Clin North Am. 2017;37(1):xiii-xiv. doi:10.1016/j.iac.2016.10.002
As a national security analyst for the U.S. government, Molly Thompson wrote extensively for classified USG publications. Thompson established and runs a strategic analysis company, is a professional genealogist and participates in numerous community organizations.Thompson holds degrees from Wellesley and Georgetown in psychology, political science and international relations.