Q. I have rash under armpits that feels hot and stings. What is it?

Answered by
Dr. Jyotisterna Mittal
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Mar 25, 2016 and last reviewed on: Dec 19, 2019

Hello doctor,

Seven months back, I developed a small scaly white patch on the left hand side of my scrotum. It did not change but my groin then became damp and very itchy. After a short period both groins were like that. Last month, I saw a dermatologist who thought it might be eczema and prescribed Eumovate ointment, but this only seemed to cause flare up. When I saw the dermatologist, I had the smallest of light red flecks on my right wrist (inner). However, since then the rash has spread to both arms (elbow) and also to both armpits. The armpits feel hot and stings. The rashes on arms are painless and not itchy as well as not raised. In the past, I have taken Daktacort, Canesten creams, antifungal tablets and Penicillin capsules. I have attached the pictures for your reference. Please help.

Dr. Jyotisterna Mittal

Cosmetology Dermatology HIV/AIDS Specialist Venereology


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have read your query in detail and viewed the attached pictures (attachments removed to protect patient identity) and understood your concern.

Investigations to be done:

1. You can get KOH (potassium hydroxide) examination of skin done to confirm the diagnosis of fungal infection.
2. Do not apply antifungal cream before you give a sample for KOH examination.
3. You may get your blood sugar levels tested, as increased fasting blood sugar (FBS) may cause recurrent fungal infections.

Probable diagnosis:

1. You are most probably suffering from a fungal infection. It most commonly affects areas like groins and armpits. Both scaly white and moist itchy lesions can occur. Sometimes, hypersensitivity lesions may also be seen along with fungal infection.

Treatment plan:

1. If I were your physician, I would recommend you to take tablet Terbinafine. The adult dose of Terbinafine is 250 mg once daily for three weeks.
3. Along with that, apply topical cream containing a combination of Terbinafine and a topical steroid like Mometasone.
4. You can take antihistamines like tablet Levocetirizine 5 mg twice daily or tablet Loratadine 10 mg twice daily.

Preventive measures:

Avoid hot humid climate, keep the affected area dry and avoid synthetic innerwear.

Regarding follow up:

Revert back after three weeks with the investigations to a dermatologist online.---> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/dermatologist

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Hi doctor,

Thank you for your reply. The rash on my arms being patchy whereas the groin area is blotchy. Do you think they are one and the same? Is it possible the arms could be rose?

Dr. Jyotisterna Mittal

Cosmetology Dermatology HIV/AIDS Specialist Venereology


Welcome back to icliniq.com.

Yes, it is very common for fungal infections to present in this way.

  • Tinea cruris (fungal infection of the groin) and tinea corporis (fungal infection of the body; may be multiple) and they frequently coexist.
  • Further, the lesions may be smaller round lesions initially and slowly grow outwards and become larger in size. This may cause the confluence of smaller lesions and they become a larger lesion. Hope it helps.

For further clarifications consult a dermatologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/dermatologist

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