ALLERGIC CONTACT DERMATITIS, RHUS
By Gary M. White, MD
A linear, streaky, asymmetric, itchy rash is typical.
Allergic contact dermatitis to poison ivy or oak commonly causes linear, streaky, eczematous, asymmetric rashes. See also Rhus penis.
- Ask about a recent hike.
- Lesions may appear over several days to a week depending on the level of exposure of each site.
- Potential cross reactants include Anacardiaceae (mango, cashew, Japanese lacquer, Indian marking nut, and African poison ivy) and ginkgo.
Linear, streaky, eczematous lesions occur, typically in exposed skin, e.g., arms, legs. The penis may be involved if the patient has the Rhus allergen on the hands and transfers it to the genitals. Dramatic swelling may result (see here).
A potent topical steroid is in order. If widespread, prednisone may be given. The clothes, shoes, etc., may need to be washed to remove any allergen.
Linear streaks with Calamine lotion for the itch.
Linear vesicular lesions are typical.
Courtesy O. Dale Collins, MD
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