Petechial Rash

Petechial rash is a skin infection which is caused due to hemorrhagebelow the skin. This condition leads to formation of rashes in the form of spots. Petechial rash usually appears in clusters. It could be in different colors like red, purple or brown.These rashes are even and when pressed, it doesn’t change color.

Petechial rash are tiny and could measure around 3 mm. When the size of these spots is more than 3mm then these are called as ‘purpura.’ If a person suffers from these rashes it could mean the presence of number of medical disorders. It could be minor injuries of the blood vessel or fatal disorders.

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There are several unique features of petechial rash which differentiate it from other kinds of skin rashes. The distinct characteristics of petechial rash are discussed below:

  • Size of petechial rash: The maximum size of petechial rash is three mm. The rashes are never bigger than 3mm. Size of every spot could vary from one to two mm. At the last stage of petechial rash the size could be of 0.5cm.
  • Color of petechial rash: The color of the spots variesin its different stages. In the 1st stage the spots are red colored. Later it changes color to blue or purple. In the last stage the spots may become dark purplish or dark bluish.
  • Location of petechial rash: In the first stage the rashes appear on the legs. Later on it spreads to other parts of the body like the back, ankles, shoulder, and thighs.
  • Petechial rash on the palate:When petechial rash develop on the palate it is called as ‘palatal petechial rash.’ These rashes form due to exposure to the infectious ‘Streptococcal’ bacteria. If a person is suffering from palatal petechial rash it could also mean the presence of other medical problems like roseola, contagious mononucleosis, viral hemorrhagic fever, rubella, thrombocytopenia,or trauma to the palate.
  • Petechial rash on the face: Petechial spots appear on the face because of excess crying, severe vomiting, and coughing. These spots are red colored and usually form on the skin around the eyes.

Symptoms of petechial rash

Symptoms of petechial rash are as follows:

  • The main symptom of petechial rash is the formation of red colored spots on the leg. These spots develop beneath the surface of the skin. Therefore these spots are flat, and not swollen. As the spots occur beneath the surface of the skin, there is no change of colorwhen pressure is applied on it.
  • In the beginning the spots appear as singular abnormalities. Gradually as the petechial spots increase they come together and form clusters.
  • The spots change color. It turns from reddish to brownish and later to purple. Because of oxidation of blood, the petechial rash could at times appear as dark purplish or dark brownish.

Causes of petechial rash

Petechial rash could develop due to various reasons. Some of the causes of petechial rash are as follows:

  • Petechial rashes usually occur because of injuries to the skin.
  • Allergic reactions due to consumption of some medicines can also lead to development of petechial spots.
  • Life threatening diseases like leukemia and bone marrow lowers the count of platelets. Thus, if a person suffers from these diseases then there are high chances for formation of petechial rash.
  • Hemorrhage beneath the skin due to injured capillaries is also a cause for petechial rash. When a capillary is injured then blood oozes out. But if there is no wound or cut on the surface of the skin, then the blood remains inside and gets collected underneath the skin, resulting in the development of the unique rashes.
  • Petechial rash may also occur due to fever,especially when affected by infectious meningococcus bacterium.
  • Petechial spots could develop on the body due to excess pressure on body tissues. For e.g. a tightly wrapped bandage can put extra pressure on the body tissue and compresses it. Due to this petechial rash appears on the compressed part of the body.
  • Thrombocytopenia or low count of the platelet in the blood causes decreased functionality of the platelet. This leads to development of petechial spots.The platelet count could also become less because of infections or after intake of some medicines.
  • The presence of autoimmune disease can cause the immune system to damage the healthy cells and tissues of the body. This further leads to hemorrhage causing petechial rash.

Treatment of petechial rash

The treatments for petechial rash are focused on treating the primary cause responsible for the rash. Some of the treatments are as follows:

  • One should stop the consumption of allergic medicines and take alternative medicine after consulting the medical expert.
  • Antibiotics can be taken to treat infections
  • Ice packs can be applied on the affected area where the blood capillaries are injured underneath the skin.
  • If the platelet count is low then it should be increased by taking doctor’s advice.
  • Petechial rash when caused due to cancer and tumor can be treated through surgeries, chemotherapy.

Petechial Rash Pictures



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