If you look behind your knees and notice a rash, it’s easy to freak out. People start imagining all sorts of nightmare scenarios.
On one hand, people can think that they’ve caught some sort of weird tropical skin disease that is almost impossible to treat. On the other hand, people might think that they’re on the early stages of skin cancer.
There’s no need to freak out. You have to understand that the more you stress about health condition that you know very little about, the worse you make it on yourself. You have to remember that your mind and your body are symbiotic. If you want to be healthy physically, it’s a good idea to calm down and be emotionally and mentally healthy as well. They feed into each other. When you notice a rash behind your knees, it’s too easy to freak out because it’s relatively rare.
The good news is that there is scientific medical literature on this condition. It is not some rare tropical skin disease that is going to take forever to treat. In most cases, the cause for that unusual rash is atopic dermatitis.
Atopic dermatitis is a condition that triggers rash behind the knees. Atopic dermatitis is actually fairly common. Many kids, especially babies, develop atopic dermatitis. They break out in a rash when milk or some other liquid is left on their skin to dry. Indeed, a wide range of irritants can account for atopic dermatitis outbreaks. In more extreme cases, kids’ whole faces or parts of their torso can look like one giant rash. Thankfully, most of them outgrow it. In the vast majority of kids who suffered from this type of rash, they are completely free of symptoms by the time they turn ten years old.
Causes of Rash Behind Knees
On a superficial level, simply scratching the area behind your knees will cause a rash. This is simplistic because it’s so obvious. You obviously feel an itch and that’s why you’re scratching. But the more you scratch, the itchier the rash gets.
Going beyond the surface, a rash behind the knees can actually be a symptom for a wide range of conditions. Again, when reading through this list, don’t freak out. Don’t assume the worst. In many cases, you only have atopic dermatitis which is pretty easy to treat.
Still, in the interest of making sure that you know all the major possible causes of rash behind the knees, here is a list of other diseases that have been known to cause this condition: eczema, heat rash, HIV infection, melanoma, syphilis, and psoriasis.
Now, it’s perfectly understandable if you’re very concerned right now after reading that list. The list, after all, includes some extremely serious health conditions. However, if you pay attention to that list, you should realize that unless you have a very pronounced rash behind the knees, chances are quite good that the condition you have is fairly innocuous.
Chances are quite high that it’s just simple atopic dermatitis. If you are really unlucky, it may be a heat rash or eczema.
It’s relatively rare that people have a rash behind the knees due to HIV infection. However, it is entirely foreseeable because HIV infection leads to a crash of your immune system. Once your immune system is compromised, all sorts of opportunistic microorganisms that were normally knocked out by your immune system start to take hold. One vulnerable area of your body, of course, is the thin skin region behind your knees.
Course of Action
If you are sure that you have a rash behind the knees and that it requires extensive attention, go to your doctor. Get your skin examined before treating it.
If you go to your physician, chances are they would first recommend some over-the-counter creams. These creams have an anti-inflammatory and soothing effect. In most cases, these creams do a good enough job to properly handle atopic dermatitis. In more extreme cases, rashes behind the knees might require cortisone pills or even cortisone shots.
Keep in mind that these are fairly extreme cases. Doctors don’t generally just rush out and prescribe cortisone shots the moment a patient comes in with a rash behind the knee. In most instances, they would wait for the patient to try over-the -counter creams and other fairly low-level therapies before they bring out the big guns, so to speak, and write out a prescription for cortisone shots.
Another common treatment is topical immunomodulators. These help stabilize the area.
Your primary care physician can also recommend antibiotics. Usually, topical antibiotics are recommended when there’s obvious infection. If the itching won’t go away and your physician suspects that the cause is bacterial in nature, don’t be surprised if your doctor prescribes an antibiotic cream.
Usually, this is paired with an antihistamine. When you scratch, you somewhat get rewarded by your brain for scratching by releasing histamines. As a result, you’re scratching and scratching for a long time. By using antihistamines, your body’s skin tissue will start to heal because it’s less irritated. It will become less irritated and less sensitive.
Once you have applied first level treatment like over-the-counter creams, give it time and avoid scratching the area.
Improving the Appearance of Behind-the-Knee Rash
If you suffered from a particularly nasty case of behind-the-knee rash, the skin area behind your knees might look really bad. It might look discolored, scarred up, puffed out, or irritated.
To improve its appearance, avoid scratchy or irritatingly rough materials. Try to wear shorts or some sort of clothing that doesn’t brush up against the affected area. It’s also a good idea to moisturize this skin area frequently. Try to avoid getting sweaty. One way to do this is to simply skip out on places that have high heat. Do yourself a favor and try to not stress.
By following these steps, you can go a long way in treating your rash behind the knees and possibly reducing its occurrence.