Q. I have rashes below waistline including penis. Do I need urgent care?

Answered by
Dr. Ashwini V Swamy
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Jul 04, 2018 and last reviewed on: Sep 19, 2019

Hi doctor,

I have rashes basically everywhere below the waistline. It started two days ago and have somewhat spread from the initial location (bug bite on the upper right thigh). There is some bruising around the initial location. I have been using Lotrimin and Cortizone cream but there is no effect on using them. Hot showers seem to help reduce redness and slight swelling. It does itch and I got pus on when I scratched it harder (trying to stop the habit). I have attached a few images. Please go through them.

I have not changed any soaps, detergents, or shampoo recently. I have not changed my diet. I had been walking through some woods (could it be some type of poison ivy or something). I have my house, bed, clothes, and carpet always cleaned and there are no signs of bugs. My dog has not had the habit of scratching anything. I am good and healthy with no medications taken or pre-existing conditions. What does this look like? Do you think this requires an ER (emergency)/urgent care visit and see a dermatologist early in the week? I am pretty concerned since it is on my penis.

Dr. Ashwini V Swamy

Dermatology Venereology


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have seen your attachment (attachment removed to protect patient identity). The condition looks like poison ivy. There are few blisters evolving, it may go on for one to two weeks without treatment. Poison ivy usually requires oral Prednisone to keep it under control.

Another possibility is, herpes zoster - the reactivation of varicella virus presenting with blisters in a group with areas of redness. I am unable to make out with these pictures if the rash is on both your thighs or if it is only on one thigh. If it is only one thigh, with burning sensation and pain, it favors herpes zoster which needs to be treated early with oral antivirals (Valacyclovir).

In both cases, I would suggest you visit your doctor as soon as possible. To keep itching under control, topical Calamine lotion with aloe and oral antihistamines like Zyrtec (Cetirizine) will be helpful.

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

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