West Houston Dermatology

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Pityriasis Alba

WHAT IS PITYRIASIS ALBA?

Pityriasis Alba is a chronic skin disorder that affects some children usually between the ages of 6 to 12. This rash is characterized by patches of lighter skin mainly on the face, although the neck, upper chest, and arms are sometimes involved. The borders of the rash are not clearly visible. The light colored patch seems to blend gradually into normal appearing skin. Sometimes the rash is covered by very fine skin flakes resembling a light dust.

Pityriasis Alba

WHAT CAUSES IT?

The cause of pityriasis alba is unknown. The rash appears to get worse when the skin is dry. It is often thought of as a mild form or eczema. In the winter months when the skin is drier, the rash may be flakier. Pityriasis alba is most noticeable in the summertime when the surrounding skin gets tanner, because it remains the same color.

HOW IS IT TREATED?

Using a moisturizer or hydrocortisone may make the patches go away faster. However, even with treatment, the rash may take months to resolve.