Lichen rosea or ringworm?  Differences between rashes

While erysipelas resolves on its own, ringworm needs treatment. Read how the diseases differ.

The most important things at a glance

Pityriasis rosea is usually harmless. Sufferers notice a rash that heals on its own within a few weeks to months and leaves no trace.

However, people without expert knowledge cannot be sure if the symptoms are actually a case of erysipelas – because some diseases can lead to similar symptoms. This includes, for example, ringworm (tinea cruris), which is also associated with a skin rash.

Despite their similar names, erysipelas and ringworm are not related. Unlike erysipelas, ringworm does not usually go away on its own.

Ringworm and ringworm: different causes

The exact reason for pink lichen; unknown. Experts suspect a link to herpes infection, which can become active again in the body after a while under certain conditions. Ringworm usually does not need treatment: after several weeks or months, the rash subsides. If necessary, treatment with corticosteroid preparations may be necessary; Antihistamines can help with severe itching. The disease is not contagious.

One ringworm It is caused by some filamentous fungi (dermatophytes). It is transmitted by close contact with infected people or animals. People can also become infected through contaminated objects – for example through shared towels. Antifungal agents in the form of ointments help fight ringworm. In severe cases, it may also be necessary to take antifungal tablets.

Ringworm must be treated or it will spread further. On the other hand, pink lichen always goes away on its own.

Lichen rosea or ringworm? Differences at a glance

In the pink lichen; It mainly affects people between the ages of 10 and 35. It usually starts with a single oval spot, usually seen on the rump. Experts talk about a primary medal. The primary medallion is 2 to 4 centimeters in size and has a scaly border.

After only a few days or weeks, a rash also appears, which can be seen especially on the upper body, arms and thighs. It appears as bright red, oval spots between one and a half to two years in size and scales slightly. The spots can also be seen on other parts of the body, but they usually don’t appear on the face. The rash is rarely associated with itching. Some people may feel ill before the rash begins. Possible symptoms are loss of appetite, headache, nausea, chills, or joint pain.

Illustration: lichen with primary medallion
In erysipelas, a purulent medal forms first, followed by a rash later. (Quelle: ttsz/Getty Images)

One ringworm It becomes noticeable one to three weeks after infection. Its name is due to its appearance: circular spots appear on the affected areas, which are surrounded by a ring-shaped rim, often slightly scaly, while the center appears pale. Small blisters or blisters can be seen in the rim area. On the further course, individual sites can merge with each other. Some patients experience itching.

Basically, ringworm can affect any part of the body. In children and adolescents it often appears on the trunk, and in adults it occurs mainly on the arms, legs, and face. In contrast to florets, there is ringworm No first medal.

Illustration: Illustration of ringworm of the hand and forearm.
In ringworm, spots form with a ring-shaped edge. (COIL: VIKTORIYA KABANOVA / Getty Images)

A visit to the doctor brings certainty

In the end, only a visit to a doctor can provide information about whether it’s erysipelas, ringworm, or another disease. Therefore, it is recommended to consult a doctor if the symptoms persist and do not subside. Seeing a doctor early is especially important if you have other symptoms along with the rash.

A doctor can usually differentiate between ringworm and ringworm based on their appearance. However, the initial medallion of ringworm can resemble ringworm. When in doubt, the doctor will take a skin sample and examine it under a microscope. If necessary, he will have a microbiological culture prepared in the laboratory so that he can detect any fungi that may be present.


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