Erythema is an abnormal reddening of the skin caused by excessive blood flow to the capillary vessels.
In some cases, erythema is considered a physiologically normal phenomenon that appears and quickly disappears on its own (for example, with strong emotional outbursts of anger, shame, etc., also in newborn babies), but with prolonged redness, this is one of the main symptoms of the inflammatory process in skin.
Causes of erythema
This condition can be caused by various reasons: the presence of infection (scarlet fever, measles), skin diseases (dermatitis), massage, circulatory disorders of the skin, physiotherapy procedures using currents, allergies, exposure to sunlight (sunburn), chemicals, cold, constant friction of the skin – any effect on the skin, leading to a long expansion of the capillaries, resulting in redness.
Varieties of erythema
Erythema nodosum (erythema nodosum) is characterized by the formation of cyanotic nodules on the skin of the legs; the disease is often accompanied by the presence of a streptococcal infection.
With multiform (exudative) erythema (erythema multiforme), rashes that manifest themselves in various forms are characterized by so-called concentric lesions that can occur repeatedly after the patient has been infected with an infection caused by a herpes simplex virus.
Infrared erythema (erythema ab igne) appears as a reticular pigmented rash affecting the lower extremities and is associated with prolonged exposure to thermal radiation.
First of all, it is necessary to sanitize foci of other infections (treatment of colds, dermatitis, scarlet fever and measles) or eliminate physical effects that irritate the skin (refusal of massage, physiotherapy, sunbathing), elimination of skin contact with chemical irritants.
Antibiotics are prescribed to treat erythema; corticosteroid products; iodine alkalis; angioprotectors (they improve microcirculation and rheological properties of blood); products that strengthen the walls of blood vessels; disaggregants; peripheral hemokinators; adaptogens. Local treatment consists in the use of dimexide applications, occlusive dressings with butadione, corticosteroid ointment. Dry heat shown.
Patients are advised to comply with bed rest (especially with erythematous foci, localized mainly on the lower extremities), gymnastics is useful to improve blood circulation. It is advisable to follow a diet with the exclusion of irritating foods: alcohol, spicy, smoked, salty, fried and canned foods, chocolate, strong tea and coffee, citrus fruits. It is necessary to exclude the influence of factors provoking relapses of erythema: hypothermia, smoking, long walking and standing, leading to circulatory disorders, bruises, heavy lifting, etc.