Buttock Rash: 9 Causes and Treatments

Buttock rash can occur due to a wide variety of disease conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, allergic reactions, etc. Treatment varies based on the cause.

Rash usually makes the affected skin area to turn red, blotchy even to swell. Rash on the buttocks can be caused by a variety of abnormal conditions and in turn it may indicate something occurring around the buttock region or further suggest a body-wide condition.

Causes and Treatments of Rash on Buttocks

1. Contact Dermatitis

Contact dermatitis is a skin condition in which the skin becomes inflamed after contact with an "irritant" or "allergic" substance, usually resulting in red, streaky or patchy rash at the contact site. Common irritants include dyes, soaps, shampoos, detergents, industrial or agricultural chemicals, cement, etc.

Treatment includes thorough washing to remove the irritant/allergen and avoiding further exposure to the inciting substance. Moisturizers, wet dressings and anti-itching lotions are also used to provide supportive care for the skin to heal. Severe cases may require corticosteroid creams.

2. Urticaria or Hives

Urticaria or hives are allergic reaction triggered by an allergen to which a person is susceptible. Allergen in this case is usually eaten or inhaled as opposed to mere skin contact (as in allergic contact dermatitis). Insect bites can also cause hives. The skin rash is almost always accompanied by itching.

Treatment involves antihistamine medications, avoiding allergy triggering agent and avoiding irritating the rash area by hot baths or tight clothes.

3. Eczema

Eczema or atopic dermatitis can also cause rash on buttocks. It is characterized by prolonged scaly and itchy rashes. Exposure to certain "substances" can worsen the symptoms of eczema.

Treatment involves use of moisturizer creams, topical steroid cream, avoiding substances that worsen the symptoms and antihistamines medications.

4. Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a skin disorder characterized by thick, red skin with flaky, silver-white "scales". Lesion can occur over the buttock regions also, although it is not the usual site for the psoriasis lesion to occur.

Treatment involves topical treatments (cortisone creams, coal tar or anthralin containing creams, moisturizers, vitamin D and vitamin A), novel systemic immunosuppressant drugs (e.g. etanercept, infliximab, etc.) and phototherapy.

5. Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Systemic lupus erythematosus is a multisystem autoimmune disorder with very variable symptom presentation. Buttock rash may occasionally occur in SLE, usually associated with other symptoms. Other autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis can also result in rash.

Treatment is focused on symptomatic relief by use of immunosuppressant medications like NSAIDs and corticosteroids. No cure is available for this condition.

6. Cellulitis

Cellulitis refers to the bacterial infection of the skin. Cellulitis in the buttocks region can result in rash on buttocks.

Treatments include antibiotics and NSAIDs (as painkillers). The person is also thoroughly evaluated for immune system dysfunction.

7. Erythema Nodosum

Erythema nodosum is an inflammatory condition characterized by painful nodules under the skin which can occur secondarily to a large number of medical conditions.

Treatment involves use of NSAIDs for pain relieve and reducing inflammation and use of corticosteroids in severe cases.

8. Infections

Some of the commonly occurring conditions that can result in buttock rash are listed below. None of them have buttock rash as the "classical" presenting feature. However, the rash associated with these conditions may occur in the buttocks region also.

  • Ringworm. Fungal infection of the skin
  • Scabies. Itching skin disease caused by a mite
  • Chickenpox. Viral infection resulting in itchy blisters over body
  • Scarlet Fever. Bacterial infection usually starting with fever and sore throat
  • Meningitis. Inflammation of the meninges (covering of the brain)
  • Impetigo. Bacterial infection of the skin, commonly occurring at the sites of break in the continuity of the skin
  • Pityriasis Rosea. Commonly occurring skin rash caused by a virus, usually lasting 4-8 weeks
  • Other Infections. Other infectious conditions like Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Lyme Disease, Yaws

Treatment of the rash on buttocks due to an infectious cause will depend upon the cause and usually involves use of an antimicrobial agent.

9. Other Causes

  • Diaper Rash. A type of contact dermatitis occurring due to prolonged exposure to wet diapers.
  • Intertrigo. A type of inflammation of the adjacent areas of the skin ("body folds"). Results in rash in the buttock crack.
  • Heat Rash. Blockage of sweat glands of the skin covering the buttocks can result in "heat rash". Usually resolves on its own without any medical intervention.



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