Pityriasis Rosea

Pityriasis rosea, also known as pityriasis circinata, is a common temporary rash that typically appears as an oval patch, known as a “herald patch” on the chest, face, belly, or back and can spread up to 4 inches across in size. It is a self-limiting rash that disappears within a few weeks.

Smaller spots may appear spreading out from the centre of the body in the shape of drooping pine-tree branches. It is possible that the rash will be itching in nature.

Pityriasis rosea can occur at any age, however, it is most frequent in children aged 10 to 35. It usually goes away on its own after about 10 weeks.

Treatment may help to reduce the symptoms. The rash lasts several weeks and resolves without leaving any scars. Medicated creams may relieve itching and hasten the healing of the rash. The illness is not communicable and only occurs on rare occasions.


Pityriasis rosea normally begins with an oval, a bit elevated, scaly red patch on the face, chest, back, or abdomen known as the “herald patch”. Some patients experience headaches, fatigue, fever, or a sore throat before the herald patch emerges.

Usually, the symptoms start before the appearance of the rash. Few individuals experience extreme itching before the rash.

Smaller bumps or red scaly areas on the face, back, chest, or belly that resemble a pine-tree pattern may occur a few days to a few weeks after the herald patch appears. Itching may occur as a result of the rash.

Rarely, few individuals may have blisters or ulcers in their mouths.

When To See a Doctor?

Consult your doctor if you develop a skin rash that worsens or does not go away after three months.

Get the best treatment for Pityriasis rosea from the best dermatologists at Medicover Hospitals.


The precise cause of pityriasis rosea is unknown. It could be caused by a virus infection, namely some types of the herpes virus. However, it is not connected to the herpes virus, which produces cold sores. Pityriasis rosea does not spread.


Pityriasis rosea complications are unlikely. If they do occur, they may involve the following:

  • Itching that is unbearable
  • Temporary areas of skin that are darker or lighter than usual (post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation), more common in those with black or brown skin.

  • Diagnosis and treatment

    In most situations, your doctor can diagnose pityriasis rosea by looking at the rash. You may require scraping or a skin biopsy, which involves removing a small piece of the rash for examination. This test can assist in distinguishing a pityriasis rosea rash from other, similar rashes.


    Pityriasis rosea normally resolves on its own in 4 to 10 weeks without therapy. If the rash hasn't gone away by then, or if the itching concerns you, consult your doctor about treatment options. The problem normally resolves without scarring and does not reoccur.


    If home remedies do not relieve symptoms or lessen the length of pityriasis rosea, your doctor may prescribe medications. Corticosteroids and antihistamines are two kinds of medicines mostly prescribed.

    Light Therapy

    The doctor may also advise you to try the light treatment. Light treatment exposes you to natural or artificial light, which may alleviate your symptoms. Even after the rash has cleared, light therapy may create darker-than-usual skin patches (post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation).

    Do’s and Don’ts

    This condition requires proper treatment and a set of do’s and don’ts to be followed to manage it and its related symptoms.

    Do’s Don’ts
    Consult the doctor for rashes. Go out in hot and sunny weather
    Take allergy medicines prescribed by the doctor. Scratch or touch it.
    Apply sunscreen of SPF 30. Bath in hot water tubs
    Use gentle soap or body wash. Cover the rash with a tight-fitting cloth.
    Take a bath with lukewarm water. Apply any home remedy that might irritate skin.

    Follow the above tips to manage this condition and cure it rapidly.

    Care at Medicover Hospitals

    At Medicover Hospitals, we have the most trusted team of dermatologists and medical experts who are experienced in providing the best healthcare services. Our diagnostic department is equipped with modern technology and equipment to conduct the tests required for the diagnosis of pityriasis rosea, based on which a dedicated treatment plan is designed. We have an excellent team of dermatologists who diagnose and treat this condition with utmost precision resulting in successful treatment outcomes.



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