What Causes a Back Rash?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 17 November 2018
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Back rashes are inflammations of the skin that are found on the human back. In some cases, the rash may cause no more than a small amount of itching and general discomfort. However, some types of rash can be extremely painful. There is no single cause for experiencing a rash on the back. Fortunately, just about all causes can be successfully treated with proper medical care.

Sometimes, the rash is caused by the development of some type of reaction to an illness. It is not unusual for people with measles or chicken pox to also find themselves with a rash on their backs. This is particularly true when adults develop either of these conditions. Often, the eruptions on the skin can cause a great deal of itching. The itching can be eased by applying a topical antibiotic cream every few hours until the health crisis has passed.

In other cases, a back rash is the result of dry skin. The skin may be dried out due to high levels of exposure to sunlight, heat, or some dermatological condition. In both situations, the best way to deal with the itchy rash is to re-hydrate the skin. This usually involves a two pronged approach of drinking more liquids and using a moisturizing cream that will help soothe the irritated skin even as it promotes a healthier balance of moisture in the upper layers of the epidermis.


Allergic rashes are another common form of back rash. When the individual is exposed to an organic or synthetic substance that triggers an allergic reaction, there is the possibility that a bright red rash will develop on the skin, including the back area. Medications that help to control allergic reactions can ease the discomfort of the rash and allow it to begin clearing up. At the same time, removing the offending substance from the patient’s home and usual surroundings will help prevent a recurrence.

A back rash may be a sign of a more serious health issue. People with compromised immune systems are much more likely to develop rashes all over the body, including the back. By eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise, and making sure to obtain a decent amount of sleep each night, the immune system can regain the ability to fight viruses and other health threats that lead to the rashes. In situations where HIV/AIDS is present, medications may be necessary to help the weakened immune system fight off the causes for the rash.

In order to deal properly with a recurring back rash, it is necessary to consult a health care professional. Determining the reasons for the development of the rash will make it possible to treat the condition quickly and effectively, and often eliminate any pain or discomfort in a short period of time.


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Post 3

@closerfan12 -- If she's been running a fever for more than a few days you should consult a doctor anyway, but if it's low, it doesn't sound like anything too serious.

One possible condition is roseola, where an infant gets a red, non-itchy rash with upper respiratory issues, but this is usually accompanied by a fever of 103 or above.

Either way, I would get it checked out -- better safe than sorry.

Post 2

What are some things that can cause a red rash on the back and chest of an infant?

She's been running a low grade fever and is a little snotty, but I don't think that it's itchy for her -- at least she doesn't act like it is.


Post 1

I have a friend who has been getting intermittent skin rashes on her back for a long time now.

The doctors aren't sure exactly what's causing it, but she's not immunocompromised or anything -- we're thinking it may be an allergic reaction of some sort.

I guess until they figure it out she'll just be stocking up on the antibiotics!

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