A skin tag, also known as an acrochordon, cutaneous papilloma, cutaneous tag, fibroepithelial polyp, fibroma molluscum, fibroma pendulum, papilloma colli, soft fibroma, and templeton skin tag, is a small bump of skin which may have a peduncle (stalk) – they look like a small piece of soft, hanging skin.
They can appear on any part of the body, but most typically exist in areas where skin may rub against skin, such as the:
- Axillae (armpits)
- Under the breasts
- Upper chest
Skin tags are invariably benign tumors of the skin with no symptoms, unless it is repeatedly rubbed or scratched, but could happen with clothing, jewelry, or when shaving. Very large skin tags may burst under pressure. They are composed of a core of fibers and ducts, nerve cells, fat cells, and a covering or epidermis.
People who are overweight, pregnant women, and diabetics are more susceptible to getting them. Also, it may be partly due to heredity and often unknown reasons. Some people have them and never even noticed them. Some may have had rubbed or fallen off painlessly. In most cases, however, they do not fall off.
Stretch marks or striae, as they are called in dermatology , are a form of scarring on the skin with an off-color hue. They are caused by tearing of the dermis, they may fade over time, but will never completely disappear. The cause of stretch marks are rapid stretching of the skin associated with rapid growth or rapid weight changes. Stretch marks in most cases may also be influenced by hormonal changes associated with puberty, pregnancy, bodybuilding, hormone replacement therapy, etc. When they first appear they are reddish or purple lines, but tend to gradually fade to a lighter range. The area usually appears to be soft to the touch.
There are several treatment to have them removed. For example, laser removal, dermabrasion, and prescription retinoids.
Cellulite is a spreading bacterial infection just below the skin surface. It is most commonly caused by Streptococcus pyogenes or Staphylococcus aureus. Some may think by the sound of it that it is a severe medical condition. But it is nothing more than normal fat beneath the skin. It makes the fat appear bumpy because it pushes against connective tissue, causing the skin above it to pucker. When it first appears it may be a red, swollen area that feels hot and tender to the touch. The redness and swelling spread quickly and is usually painful. The treatment for cellulite usually depends on what caused the infection, how severe your symptoms are and the general state of your health. Fortunately, there is a treatment for it. Your doctor can prescribe an oral antibiotic, but sometimes you may have to be hospitalized to receive antibiotics through your veins.
When dealing with cellulite it is important to rest and elevate the area of the body. That can help keep it calm and less painful.
Eczema is medical condition that cause the skin to become inflamed or irritated. Often those using the term eczema are referring to atopic dermatitis. It can be very irritating, very itchy and at times can be very painful. Eczema can be caused by poison oak, irritant dermatitis (from excessive contact with a harsh chemical substance), fungal infections, scabies, very dry skin, and pompholyx.
Treatment for eczema can be managed at home by:
- Changing laundry detergents or soaps that may be causing the irritant
- Avoiding tight-fitting or rough clothing
- Avoiding scratching the affected area
- Medical treatments that include prescription anti-inflammatory medications, and steroid creams
- Also, antibiotics may have to be prescribed to clear the affected irritation.
Rosacea is a common disorder that mainly affects skin on the face. It causes redness on the nose, chin, cheeks, and forehead. It can also cause small, red, pus-filled bumps on the face. It can occur in anyone, but it mostly affects middle-aged women who have fair skin. Unfortunately there is no cure for rosacea, there are treatments that can control and reduce the signs and symptoms. If you experience persistent redness of your face, it is important to see your doctor for a diagnosis and get the proper treatment you may need. If it is left untreated, rosacea can worsen over time. The signs and symptoms may flare up for a period of weeks to months and then fade before flaring up again. Some people mistaken it for acne, an allergic reaction or other skin problems.
Erysipelas is caused by bacteria penetrating the outer barrier of your skin. The bacteria that can commonly cause erysipelas are known as streptococci, and they usually live on your skin and other body surfaces and do not cause harm. They can enter your skin through a cut or a sore. Conditions that cause breaks in the skin such as athlete’s foot and eczema, can sometimes lead to erysipelas.
Some other causes for it are
- cuts and ulcers in your skin
- surgical incisions
- insect bites
- swollen legs due to health problems such as heart failure
- uncontrolled diabetes
- injecting illegal drugs
- anything that suppresses the immune system
- having had a previous episode of erysipelas.
Those who are at risk the most are very young or very old. Those over 60 being most likely to develop erysipelas. Elderly people whose immune systems are compromised or who have problems with fluid building up after surgery have the greatest risk. Before the symptoms of it develop, you may notice there is a cut, insect bite, or a nose and throat infection.