What Are the Most Common Causes of Circular Rashes?

Ringworm is the most common cause of a circular rash.
Tick bites may cause a circular rash to develop on a person's body.
Various types of dermatitis may cause circular rashes on the skin.
Topical antibiotics and steroids may be prescribed to treat skin rashes.
A circular rash is common with Lyme disease.
Spider bites can result in a rash.
Article Details
  • Written By: Christina Edwards
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 20 October 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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Circular rashes can be symptoms of several medical conditions. Ringworm, which is caused by a fungal infection, is one of the most common causes of a circular rash. Various types of dermatitis can also produce these types of rashes. Some bug bites may result in round rashes. Lyme disease, for instance, is caused by a tick bite, and one of the most common symptoms of this disease is a round rash.

Ringworm is one of the most common causes of circular rashes. Contrary to popular belief, ringworm is not caused by any type of worm. It is actually a fungal infection caused by the same fungus responsible for athletes foot.

The circular rashes associated with ringworm are usually scaly and itchy. Often, there will be a clear area of skin in the center of the rash, creating a ring-shaped rash. Ringworm is typically very contagious, but it is easily treated. An over-the-counter topical anti-fungal cream will usually clear up a ringworm rash. If the rash persists or continues to spread, however, a stronger prescription medication may be needed.

Various types of dermatitis can also cause circular rashes in some people. One of the most common signs of discoid dermatitis, for instance, is a circular, or disc-shaped, rash. This rash most commonly appears on a person's appendages, but it can also develop on other areas of the body as well, including the torso.

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Discoid dermatitis, like many other types of dermatitis, also seems to flare up more in dry environments. Treatment of discoid dermatitis typically involves applying a moisturizing cream to any circular rashes on the body. Topical steroids can also be applied, and these can help keep inflammation down.

Bug bites can also cause circular rashes. The bite sites may also be very itchy, and in some cases, painful, and swollen. Mosquitoes and spiders are two insects that commonly cause rashes when they bite a person or animal.

A circular rash is a very common symptom of Lyme disease, which is an infection caused by a bacteria transmitted through deer tick bites. Other symptoms of Lyme disease typically resemble the symptoms of the common flu, and they can include fever, muscle aches, and fatigue. Antibiotics are usually the recommended course of treatment for Lyme disease. To prevent Lyme disease, people who go into wooded areas should wear long pants and shirt sleeves, along with a DEET insect repellent.

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anon946505
Post 4

It's never a spider bite. Seriously. Anytime someone comes to the doc's office complaining of a 'spider bite' it's an automatic "well, that's not true, let's figure out what this is."

Bull's eye = you should check for Lyme disease. Certainly not a black widow bite. Come on, you're on the internet. Look up what a black widow bite looks/feels like. It's nothing like what you've described.

A large red spot could still be a mosquito bite. Sometimes you react more strongly.

ddljohn
Post 3

Can lupus cause circular rashes? I was diagnosed with lupus recently and last week, I developed a circular rash. The rash seems to get worse when I'm out in the sun.

ZipLine
Post 2

@fify-- I had a rash like that once from a spider bite, but the center of the rash was white unlike yours. It looked like a bull's eye and I thought that it was a fungal infection at first. But my skin wasn't scaly and I knew that we had a spider infestation at home. My doctor told me that it's probably a Black Widow spider bite.

Most spider bites aren't a cause for concern, unless it gets infected. Infection can be very bad so if you get a rash like this again, make sure to wash it with soap and water and keep it clean. If it starts looking infected (inflammation, pus, etc.), you need antibiotics.

fify
Post 1

I had a red, circular rash on my leg a few months ago. It was just a large, round, red spot. It itched from time to time. I still haven't figured out what caused it but I think that it was a spider bite. I get bit by mosquitoes frequently in the summer and I've never gotten a rash like that from them. This rash took a whole month to go away, so it was definitely a different insect.

Has anyone had something like this? Do you know what caused it?

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