Maculopapular Rash

What is a Maculopapular Rash ?

As we all know that our skin is the most sensitive part of our body. This is our first line of defence against bacteria and microorganism that are suspended in the air. When our skin experienced intense redness, it is too obvious to see most especially in arms, legs, neck and body.

Maculopapular Rash is often visible in the skin. Its characteristics are small red lumps that spread in the entire body. The person affected suffers both macules and papules into their skin. Having a body irritation can make our day unproductive since we cannot do anything aside from scratching and pissed off. It is good to know what are the roots causes of this condition and let us find out the best treatment options.

Maculopapular rash comes from the two words “macule” and “papule” which means flat, small and non-colored swollen bumps. This rash is been associated with Human Immunodeficiency Virus rashes. It can widely affect the general population and can appear in any parts of our body.

At first, the rashes can be seen as reddish colored and later on the color fades away. According to experts, maculopapular should not be used as a term but they required the word “morbiliform” to designate such term. It is also called the ‘fifth disease rashes”. This rashes sometimes elevated and sometimes not.

Causes of Maculopapular Rash

This rash is pertaining to disease conditions. The conditions listed below often accompany this type of rashes. These diseases are:

  • Measles -an acute infection common in children
  • Rubella – a mildly contagious viral disease
  • Scarlet fever – a communicable disease characterized by fever and strawberry-colored tongue
  • Heat rash- often cause by ultraviolet rays from the sun (prickly heat)
  • Syphilis erythrovirus- an infection characterized by redness and rash
  • Graft Versus Host Disease– comes out after blood transfusion complications.
  • Marburg Hemorrhagic Fever
  • Overdose intake of Niacin
  • Sea Bather’s Eruption- cause by hypersensitivity to stings of larvae
  • Typhus Fever- carried by lice in hair that causes fever
  • Scabies- irritation of the skin.
  • Epstein- Barr Virus- this is from animal virus contacted by human
  • Dengue Fever-  fever caused by mosquitoes
  • Chikungunya- fever that also carried by mosquito
  • Medication side effects such as antibiotics
  • Cancer patient chemotherapy side effect

Signs and Symptoms of Maculopapular Rash

The manifestations of signs and symptoms of this condition depend on the underlying causes.

  • Appearance of small reddish lesions
  • Body temperature elevation
  • Body irritations of the rash
  • Blanching of the skin
  • Palms and soles are most affected especially in children
  • 3-4 days the rashes will stay in the skin
  • Skin blisters

Diagnosis of Maculopapular Rash

Diagnosing this condition can be obtained by thorough assessment.

  • Check first the medical history
  • Look and inspect for the site of the rash
  • Complete blood count is done
  • Syphilis test, culture and sensitivity test, and other specific test for a certain diseases
  • Cerebrospinal fluid test
  • General examination of the entire body may be done
  • Pain assessment is also done
  • Eyes, ears, nose and throat exam are also done
  • Other specific test in confirming the disease condition

Treatment of Maculopapular Rash

Treatment modalities target all the symptoms. It depends upon the underlying cause.

  • Anti-inflammatory is given for infection such as chloroquine
  • Increasing fluid intake and intravenous fluids is recommended especially when dengue fever is associated
  • Ultraviolet radiation therapy for Marburg haemorrhagic fever
  • Pain medication is also prescribe for Epstein-Barr Virus
  • Blood transfusion if must needed
  • Consult dermatologist for further evaluation
  • Have a good rest to save energy
  • Advance medical treatment for Marburg Hemmorhagic Fever
  • Symptomatic treatment approach for other associated sign and symptoms

The treatment is as simple as that but it can create big impact to the affected person. In children, make sure you collaborate with your paediatrician for the test and medication for your child. Do not let your child suffer with this condition. Be vigilant enough to take good care of your children. For adults, seek specialist that can help you with your condition.

Special Considerations

A Maculopapular rash is due to viral infections. You can commonly see this in children. Good news for you, treatment of this is like treating viral infections. The rashes will naturally vanish right after you are treated with the underlying conditions. If no other complications involved, you don’t need to worry much. The prognosis of this condition is highly predictable with higher survival rate.

When you seek medical advice to your health care provider, be sure to state and submit yourself to all the required test to diagnose your condition. The sooner you submit yourself, the faster the recovery and healing. Marburg Hemmorrhagic fever and Epstein – Barr virus are the complicated ones. Unless it is detected very soon, experts can still evaluate and determined your condition.

Pictures of Maculopapular Rash


maculopapular rash on abdomen-min

maculopapular rash on back of abdomen-min

maculopapular rash on front of trunk

maculopapular rash on hand

Image 5 – A hemorrhagic rash on back of palm

maculopapular rash on upper lower limbs

maculopapular rashes

maculopapular rash


Image 8 – Maculopapular rash on abdomen

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