Most skin rashes are minor and may be treated at home or with a non-emergent
appointment with a family physician, but if discoloration of the skin
is accompanied by other symptoms, it may require the attention of an emergency
care physician. If you’re ever unsure of whether a child or elderly
individual should be seen at the ER for a
skin rash, it’s generally best to err on the side of caution. The emergency
care physicians at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center are always available
to provide prompt care. These are some of the situations in which you
should seek emergency care:
The rash appears suddenly.
The sudden onset of a skin rash can be a cause for concern. A skin rash
that starts abruptly and spreads rapidly may be triggered by an allergic
reaction. An emergency care physician may need to look at it. If small,
red, itchy hives develop and a person starts to have trouble breathing,
it’s essential to call 911 right away.
The rash covers large areas of the body.
possible indicator of an allergic reaction is a skin rash that covers much of the body. Widespread rashes may also
be caused by infections, such as measles and chickenpox. Physicians strongly
recommend routine measles vaccines for children, but not all parents vaccinate
their children. This practice has led to more common outbreaks of measles.
The rash is accompanied by a fever.
A rash accompanied by a fever can be a serious medical problem. An ER physician
can evaluate you or your child for measles, shingles, scarlet fever, and
severe allergic reactions.
The rash begins to blister or appears infected.
Even if a skin rash appears minor initially, it may later require emergency
care. A trip to the ER is warranted if the rash blisters or turns into
open sores, especially if the skin around the eyes, genitals, or in the
mouth is affected. Skin rashes that itch intensely can be difficult to
resist scratching, but this can contribute to infections of the sores.
Emergency care is needed for signs of an infection, including swelling,
crusting, unusual discharge, increasing pain, and a red streak that emanates
from the sore.
For all of your medical emergencies in the Las Vegas area, the emergency
care team at
Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center is available 24/7. From stroke and heart attacks to skin rashes and infections,
our emergency care department is fully equipped to handle every medical
emergency. You can request a physician referral for non-emergent situations
by calling (702) 233-5300.