What does fact checked mean?
At Healthfully, we strive to deliver objective content that is accurate and up-to-date. Our team periodically reviews articles in order to ensure content quality. The sources cited below consist of evidence from peer-reviewed journals, prominent medical organizations, academic associations, and government data.
- Family Doctor: Skin Rashes and Other Changes
- MayoClinic.com: Folliculitis
- Medline Plus: Folliculitis
- Medline Plus: Eczema
The information contained on this site is for informational purposes only, and should not be used as a substitute for the advice of a professional health care provider. Please check with the appropriate physician regarding health questions and concerns. Although we strive to deliver accurate and up-to-date information, no guarantee to that effect is made.
Non-Itchy Red Bumps on My Body
Even if they are not itchy or painful, red bumps on your body warrant a medical evaluation. The unsightly appearance of your skin can make you self-conscious, and you might worry about spreading the bumps to other people or parts of your body. Although non-itchy red bumps probably do not indicate any type of serious medical condition--especially if you do not have a fever or other serious symptoms--it is important to see your doctor promptly so he can identify and treat the bumps.
Since most bug bites and skin irritations, like contact rash or heat rash, cause itchiness along with the red bumps, Medline Plus indicates that the most probable causes of non-itchy red bumps in adults are folliculitis, an infection of the hair follicle, and eczema, an allergic condition that can make your skin dry and prone to irritation. Both of these conditions can turn itchy and painful if left untreated. Sebaceous cysts--small, closed cysts under the skin--can also cause small, red bumps on your skin. These cysts usually originate in hair follicles and appear on your face, neck and trunk.
In addition to visually examining the bumps, your doctor will obtain your complete medical history. She will also ask questions about the bumps, such as when they first appeared and whether they have spread across your body. The American Academy of Dermatologists suggests that the trained eye of most doctors can identify the causes of many bumps and rashes, but in some cases, further testing might be necessary. Lab tests can show whether bacteria or fungus are present if she suspects folliculitis, while patch testing can help identify the allergens causing the eczema.
Although the condition rarely occurs in adults, children can get viral rashes that appear as non-itchy red bumps. Dr. William Sears, pediatrician and author of “The Baby Book,” reports that these types of rashes often accompany a fever and lack any specific pattern or appearance. Sears notes that these types of rashes typically start on the trunk and then spread to the arms and legs.
Friction from tight clothing or irritation from shaving or waxing can cause folliculitis. To prevent further damage to your hair follicles, Medline Plus suggests wearing loose clothing while waiting for the infection to clear. They also recommend not shaving or waxing the area while the bumps are present. Keep the area clean and dry and avoid using contaminated towels or washcloths.
Although you might be tempted to ignore non-itchy red bumps on your body if they appear in hidden places and do not cause you any discomfort, Medline Plus cautions against ignoring bumps and cysts. Call your doctor if you notice new growths on your body so he can examine you for skin cancers.
- Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images