HIV Rash

November 13, 2013 | 0

What is HIV Skin Rash?

HIV virus causes dark and pigmented rashes all over the body within three weeks from infection. The rashes develop in the form of clusters of pimples or bumps, similar to eczema; or blisters, lesions and irregular patches or sores in mucous membranes of genitals, mouth and eyes. Sometimes the lesions occur due to the peeling of skin infected by HIV. Rarely, rashes may develop itching.

Normally the HIV rashes are accompanied by fever, fatigue, muscle pain, cramps, bowl disorder, swollen glands, stiff and painful joints, vision problem and loss of memory, appetite, and weight. Rashes occur either by HIV infection or by the medications consumed for treating HIV infection. Mostly HIV rashes are not contagious and may last for two to three weeks.

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Types of HIV rashes

  • Drug rashes: Drug rashes develop due to HIV medications that appear like small bumps, or hives which may lead to peeling of skin.
  • Acute infection rash: Occurs on torso, limbs and palms within four weeks of HIV infection and vanishes within few weeks.
  • Herpes rashes: These are reddish, swollen and with fluid inside; and usually affect genitals and oral cavity.
  • Symptomatic HIV rashes: This type of rash occurs during the last stages of AIDS and is dry, scaly, and pinkish. It develops on the face, armpits, scalp and chest.

Virus, fungi, and bacterial infections can also cause other types of HIV rashes, some of which may be contagious.

Viral rashes are:

  • HPV warts that are tiny and pimple like and which occur all over the body.
  • Mollucsum contagiosum which occur on moist parts of body and spread through shared items like clothes.

Bacterial rashes are:

  • Hives on skin due to food and drug allergies
  • Bacterial follictus that grow in hair follicles
  • Eosinophilic follictus which are itchy red rashes present around hair follicles of upper body.
  • Scabies develop in feet, waist, palms and elbows and are itchy particularly during night.
  • Psoriasis are reddish scaly patches

Fungal rashes are:

  • Tinea ¬†that is contagious and discomforting; and may lead to jock itch, athlete foot, ringworm infection.

Locations of HIV rash

  • HIV rashes occur in body trunk as pigments
  • Patches are prominent in chest and may affect neck and face. May appear on feet and arms in certain cases
  • Rarely may appear as lumps on hands and feet. Along with the progress of HIV infection, rashes appear all over body causing sores, lesions and blisters in oral cavity and the genitals.


  • If the HIV rashes are due to medications, then it should be stopped and even after HIV rash vanishes, the drugs should not be restarted without consulting a doctor.

Preventive measures for HIV rash are:

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  • Avoid direct sunlight or extreme heat and cold climates
  • For controlling the itching, use Benadryl and hydrocortisone cream.
  • Avoid unprotected sex and blood to blood contact.
  • Take cool showers daily. Apply cool ointments. Avoid hot baths.
  • Do not wear such fabrics that may induce itching.
  • Avoid foods which may have triggered the HIV rash.

HIV Rash Pictures

hiv rash pictures (2)

HIV Rash images

HIV rash black skin

HIV Rash pics on face

HIV Rash Pictures

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