Just recently one of my co-workers wanted advise on rash that appeared very quickly during her workday. Upon inspection she is showing all signs of Contact Dermatitis which is a localized large, burning, and itchy blistering rashes on the skin caused by contact with a foreign substance.
Only the superficial regions of the skin are affected in contact dermatitis. Inflammation of the affected tissue is present in the epidermis (the outermost layer of skin) and the outer dermis (the layer beneath the epidermis).
Common causes of contact dermatitis include some metals like nickel, gold, plants like poison ivy, solvents and cleaning products, latex kerosene and certain foods and drinks. Plus perfumes. Her’s was caused by a plastic apron that she needs to wear when performing cosmetic tattooing.
Though this type of dermatitis is usual confined to the area where the trigger actually touched the skin if it is an irritant that has triggered the dermatitis it may be more widespread on the skin. Contact Dermatitis can take anywhere from several days to weeks to heal. Treatment is simple
- Since contact dermatitis relies on an irritant or an allergen to initiate the reaction, it is important to identify the responsible agent and avoid it.
- Immediately after exposure to a known allergen or irritant, wash with soap and cool water to remove or inactivate most of the offending substance.
- If blistering develops, cold moist compresses applied for 30 minutes, 3 times a day can offer relief.
- Calamine lotion may relieve itching.
- Oral antihistamines can relieve itching.
- Avoid scratching.
- A barrier cream that contains zinc oxide may help protect the skin and retain moisture.
If the rash does not improve or continues to spread after 2–3 of days please seek advise from you medical practitioner.