The HIV virus
puts people at risk for a wide range of
infections. This can include a number of conditions that can lead to
rashes, sores, and lesions. Skin conditions are among the
earliest signs of the presence of HIV in the
body. They’re often viewed as markers for the disease’s
progression. According to Indian Journal of
Sexually Transmitted Diseases and AIDS, approximately
90 percent of all people with HIV will have rash-like symptoms
during the course of their disease. HIV-related rashes generally fall into
one of three categories:
- generalized dermatitis
- bacterial, fungal, viral, and parasitic infections
- skin tumors
or generalized skin rashes, is the most commonly
experienced symptom of HIV. Some typical types of dermatitis are:
Xerosis is dryness of the skin, which
often appears as dry, itchy, and scaly skin
patches on the arms and legs.
This is a chronic
inflammatory condition. It often causes red,
scaly, and itchy rashes.
Prurigo nodularis is a condition
in which lumps
on the skin cause scab-like appearances and
itchiness. This type of dermatitis
is typically seen among people with extremely compromised immune systems.
This skin disease
is characterized by itchy, red bumps centered on hair follicles in
the upper body. This form of dermatitis is
found most frequently in people in later stages of the disease’s progression.
for dermatitis normally include one or more of the
A number of
bacterial, viral, fungal, and parasitic infections impact people
infected with HIV during the course of their disease. The most commonly
reported infections include:
Herpes zoster is caused by the same
underlying virus as household chickenpox. It can
cause shingles, a condition in which
painful skin rashes and bumps appear in people
with HIV. Treatment often involves antiviral drug regimens.
Molluscum contagiosum is characterized by pink or
flesh-colored bumps on the skin. This
highly contagious skin virus often impacts people
with HIV. Repetitive treatments may be needed to completely rid the body of these unwanted bumps. Current
treatment options, according to Johns Hopkins,
include freezing the bumps with liquid nitrogen, topical ointments, and laser
Oral Hairy Leukoplakia
This oral viral infection can be characterized as thick, white lesions on the tongue.
Ongoing antiretroviral treatments will improve the body’s immune system and
ability to rid itself of this virus.
This fungal infection causes a thick white layer on the
tongue. This recurrent infection can be challenging
to treat. Current options include antifungal medications, oral rinses, and oral
sarcoma, a form of cancer that impacts the lining of lymph nodes or blood
vessels, appears as dark lesions on the skin that
are brown, purple, or reddish in color. This form of cancer can impact the
lungs, digestive tract, and liver. It can cause shortness
of breath, difficulty breathing, and swelling of the skin.
appear when the white blood cell count of
the patient drops dramatically. The appearance of these lesions is often a sign
that HIV has turned into AIDS and that the person’s immune system is severely compromised. Kaposi sarcoma
responds to chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery. Ongoing antiretroviral drug therapy has shown promise in reducing the
incidence of this cancer in people with HIV.
Talk to Your Doctor
People with HIV will most likely experience
one or more of these types of
skin conditions and rashes. Discuss your symptoms with your doctor if you have a rash. They’ll assess the
type of rash you have, consider your current medications, and prescribe a
treatment plan to alleviate the symptoms.