Skin color results from the blood flow in the tiny vessels within the skin as well as the amount of pigment present in the dermal layers. Any number of normal conditions can alter the pigmentation of the skin, but only abnormal causes result in bluish discolorations. Chemicals such as medications and dyes, congenital defects and dangerous heart conditions and lung problems result in bluish discolorations of the nailbeds, skin and mucosal membranes. It is important to contact your health care provider in the event that you or a loved one has a bluish skin discoloration.
A common side effect of this antibiotic is a bluish discoloration of the gums, nail beds, lower legs and mucosal membranes, such as the inside of the nose and mouth. According to an article published in the "Canadian Medical Association Journal," 41 percent of rhematoid arthritis patients experienced a blue-gray discoloration of their skin after long-term minocycline use. Treatment for minocycline-induced hyperpigmentation is Alexandrite laser therapy 1.
Acne & Freckles
Chemicals that cause hypoxia and cyanosis include:
- aniline dyes
"Fitzpatrick's Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology" states that Mongolian spots are benign skin lesions that occur in early childhood to disappear with maturity 3. Mongolian spots appear as large blue-gray spots on the buttocks and lower backs of infants. These are caused by melanocytes, the cells responsible for skin pigmentation. Melanocytes become trapped in the dermal layer of the skin, producing the blue color. These are common in 99 percent of infants of Asian and Native American descent.
- "Fitzpatrick's Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology" states that Mongolian spots are benign skin lesions that occur in early childhood to disappear with maturity 3.
- Melanocytes become trapped in the dermal layer of the skin, producing the blue color.
Acne & Freckles
What Are the Causes of White Spots on Tan Skin?
Foot and Leg Discoloration
Rheumatoid Arthritis & Skin Symptoms
White Blotches on the Chest
Can Milk Thistle Cause Skin Rashes?
Allergic Reactions With Skin Blotches
Doxycycline for Treating Acne Cysts
Allergies to Triple Antibiotic Cream
Hyperpigmentation in Dark Skin
- "Canadian Medical Association Journal"; Hyperpigmentation Associated With Minocycline Therapy; Souyma Chatterjee, M.D.; January 2007
- "Cardiology Clinics"; A Comprehensive Approach to Management of Ventricular Arrhythmias; Fred Kusumoto, M.D.; August 2008
- "Fitzpatrick's Color Atlas & Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology" 5th ed.; Klaus Wolff, M.D., et al.; 2005
- "Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics" 18th ed.; Robert Kliegman, M.D., et al.; 2007
Writing professionally since 1998, Dr. Christine Princeton has been published with the American Osteopathic Association and the Society for Teachers of Family Medicine. Dr. Princeton received her degree at Touro University Nevada College of Osteopathic Medicine and works as a physician in the fields of hospital medicine and women's health.