Miliaria

This condition presents as a direct result of profuse sweating from exposure to hot and humid weather conditions, especially in the tropics. Blockage of the sweat glands causes the ducts to rupture and a superficial inflammatory reaction around the sweat glands occurs. It is more likely to occur during scorching hot or extremely humid, summer conditions.

  • It usually affects children or obese people.
  • Rarely affecting the palms or soles, it is more likely to occur in the areas of the body that are covered by clothing and the areas that are prone to sweating.
  • The lesions present as papules or small, thin-walled superficial pinpoint vesicles often surrounded by a red “halo”. The lesions are slightly shiny and erupt easily when scratched. Upon drying there is an associated fine scaling of the affected area. Pinpoint sterile pustules may also be present.
  • It is often accompanied by a slight burning sensation and a “prickly” itchy feeling.
  • In extreme cases where the lesions are extensive, the condition may lead to heat exhaustion accompanied by systemic symptoms such as weakness, loss of appetite, fatigue, sleeping, headaches and dizziness.
  • Miliaria alba presents as white vesicles, unlike Miliaria rubra which has a “reddish” presentation. All other symptoms are the same.