What is a malar rash?

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Malar rash is described as a skin outbreak or eruption, usually on the cheeks and nasal bridge. The rash appears reddened or purplish and might be solid or blotchy in appearance. It is widely called as a “butterfly rash” due to its striking butterfly form.

The rash might be flattened or slightly elevated and feel scaly and rough. It can also be itchy and even painful in severe cases.

What are the usual causes?

The usual causes of a malar rash include the following:

  • Bacterial infections such as Lyme disease
  • Autoimmune conditions such as lupus
  • Hereditary ailments
    malar rash
    The rash might be flattened or slightly elevated and feel scaly and rough.
  • Inflammatory skin conditions such as rosacea
  • Vitamin deficiencies such as pellagra
  • Sensitivity to the sun

Management of malar rash

The treatment for a malar rash is based on its cause.

  • Lupus – the treatment involves non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), steroids, anti-malarial drugs and immunosuppressive drugs.
  • Rosacea – the treatment includes gels or creams to soothe and repair the skin as well as lessen redness and oral antibiotics to control the inflammation
  • Bacterial infection – the treatment includes topical or oral antibiotics

Some of the self-care measures include protecting the face from sun exposure. Other measures to promote healing and prevent the worsening of the rash include:

  • Applying skin products for those who have sensitive skin
  • Eat a balanced and healthy diet

A malar rash is considered common and rarely present a problem. The rashes triggered by bacterial infections can be treated. If caused by SLE, the rash improves with treatment over time.

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