erythema


erythema
erythematic /er'euh thi mat"ik/, erythematous /er'euh them"euh teuhs, -thee"meuh-/, erythemic, erythemal, adj.
/er'euh thee"meuh/, n. Pathol.
abnormal redness of the skin due to local congestion, as in inflammation.
[1760-70; < NL < Gk, equiv. to eryth(rós) red + -ema n. suffix]

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Abnormal skin redness from increased blood flow, caused by dilation and irritation of surface capillaries.

It has a variety of manifestations. In erythema multiforme, a symptom complex seen in several diseases, spots appear suddenly, often with a bull's-eye pattern. It may become life-threatening in severe cases; in mild cases symptoms may recur. Hormone treatment may be effective. In erythema nodosum, a hypersensitivity reaction usually associated with strep infection (see streptococcus), drugs, or the disease sarcoidosis, painful red nodules appear in the deeper skin layer of the lower legs. They usually disappear over several weeks and do not recur. Another form of erythema is pellagra.

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      any abnormal redness of the skin. Erythema is caused by dilation and irritation of the superficial capillaries; the augmented flow of blood through them imparts a reddish hue to the skin. Erythema may arise from a great variety of causes and disease conditions. Blushing is a transient form of erythema.

      From a medical point of view, the two major erythemas are erythema multiforme and erythema nodosum. Erythema multiforme is characterized by the sudden eruption of crops of red or violet flat spots, wheals, papules (small solid elevations), and vesicles (blisters), the characteristic lesions often having a concentric, or target, pattern; the skin on the palm of the hand and the mucous surfaces, especially the mouth and eyelids, are commonly involved. Erythema multiforme is believed to be a symptom complex that is secondary to a wide variety of underlying disease states. It may run a severe course and become life-threatening; in mild cases, the eruption is prone to recur. Variable success in treatment is obtained with the use of corticosteroid hormones.

      Erythema nodosum is a hypersensitivity reaction most commonly associated with streptococcal infection, drugs (particularly oral contraceptives), and sarcoidosis (a systemic disease characterized by the formation of granulation, or scarlike, tissue). It is marked by the sudden onset of multiple, red, painful nodules in the deeper layer of the skin on the external surface of the lower legs. It most often affects young women. The nodules usually disappear spontaneously over a period of several weeks. Recurrences are uncommon. Treatment is usually of the underlying cause and may include complete bedrest, oral salicylates, and—in treatment of sarcoidosis—systemic corticosteroids.

      Those erythematous conditions that are directly caused by specific agents include endemic erythema, or pellagra, due to a dietary deficiency of the vitamin niacin; and erythema ab igne, due to nonburning exposure to radiant heat.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • erythema — [er΄i thē′mə] n. [ModL < Gr erythēma < erythainein, to redden, blush < erythros, RED] an abnormal redness of the skin caused by various agents, as sunlight, drugs, etc., that irritate and congest the capillaries erythemic [er΄i thēmik]… …   English World dictionary

  • Erythema — Er y*the ma, n. [NL., fr. Gr. ?, fr. ? to redden, fr. eryqro s red.] (Med.) A disease of the skin, in which a diffused inflammation forms rose colored patches of variable size. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Erythēma — (gr., Hautröthe, Med.), 1) niederer Grad der Rose, mehr durch äußere Reize erzeugt; 2) rosenartiger, doch mehrfleckiger Ausschlag; davon: Erythematisch …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • erythema — medical Latin, from Gk. erithema, from erythainein to become red. Related: Erythematous …   Etymology dictionary

  • Erythema — Not to be confused with Arrythmia. Erythema Classification and external resources Characteristic bull s eye rash (erythema migrans) of early Lyme …   Wikipedia

  • Erythema — Erythem bei einer Lyme Borreliose Erythem (Erythema, von altgriechisch ἐρύθημα (erýthema) „Röte“, „Entzündung“[1]) ist ein dermatologischer Ausdruck für eine Hautrötung bedingt durch eine Mehrdurchblutung auf dem Boden einer Gefäßerweiterung und… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Erythema — A redness of the skin resulting from inflammation, for example, as caused by sunburn. * * * Redness due to capillary dilation. [G. e., flush] e. ab igne a reticulated, pigmented, macular eruption that occurs, often on the shins, in bakers,… …   Medical dictionary

  • erythema — n. flushing of the skin due to dilatation of the blood capillaries in the dermis. It may be physiological or a sign of inflammation or infection. Erythema nodosum is characterized by tender bruiselike swellings on the shins and is often… …   The new mediacal dictionary

  • erythema — noun Etymology: New Latin, from Greek erythēma, from erythainein to redden, from erythros Date: circa 1783 abnormal redness of the skin due to capillary congestion • erythematous adjective …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • erythema — noun a) Abnormal redness and inflammation of the skin, due to vasodilation. b) Skin redness from sunburn or chemical irritation See Also: erythrocyte, erythrophobia, erythronium …   Wiktionary


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