Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Symptoms Evaluation Treatment questions for doctor specialist Home Care itching warning signs Outlook Underlying Cause

Herald Patch Overview

Another name for Herald Patch is Pityriasis Rosea.

What is pityriasis rosea?
A person with pityriasis rosea has a common skin rash that tends to occur in the spring and fall. The rash usually causes itchy, pink, oval patches on the trunk and extremities. The cause of pityriasis rosea is unknown, but it may be triggered by a viral infection.

What are the symptoms of pityriasis rosea?
Symptoms that may occur before pityriasis rosea include a runny nose, cough, nasal congestion and sore throat. The rash usually starts with a single, itchy, pink, oval on the chest, back or abdomen. As the patchy rash spreads, it may form a pattern that looks like the drooping branches of pine tree.

How does the doctor treat pityriasis rosea?
Pityriasis rosea resolves without treatment within 8 weeks. Treatment for pityriasis rosea may include oral antihistamines, hydrocortisone cream, and phototherapy.

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Last Updated: Jul 23, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Herald Patch References
  1. Karnath B, Hussain N, Bevin M. Pityriasis rosea. Appearance and distribution of macules aid diagnosis. Postgrad Med. 2003 May;113(5):93-4, 97. [12764899]
  2. Stulberg DL, Wolfrey J. Pityriasis rosea. Am Fam Physician. 2004 Jan 1;69(1):87-91. [14727822]
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