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Amoxicillin Rash – Symptoms, Treatment, Pictures

Updated on June 24, 2015

Amoxicillin is an antibiotic that belongs to the penicillin family. It is primarily used to treat infections caused by bacteria (mainly B-lactamase negative). These infections occur in lungs, skin, urinary tract, eyes, ears, nose, and throat. Amoxil or Amoxicillin is available in many forms like capsules, tablets, powder, chewable tablets, and pediatric oral suspension.

If there is an allergic reaction triggered by Amoxicillin, it may result in symptoms like rashes on the skin, hives, and difficulty in breathing. In most of the cases, the rashes do not require treatment and certain remedies will work to heal them. If rashes are accompanied by other symptoms or if they do not seem to heal, then the problem might be more serious and should be addressed by a doctor.

Symptoms

An amoxicillin rash looks like pink or red spots on the skin. In mild cases, these rashes remain only on the trunk of the body but in severe cases, they can develop on the face as well. These red or pink spots are small and flat and do not cause itching or any discomfort. However, if rashes begin to itch, then the person is probably having an allergic reaction that requires attention.

Amoxicillin rash may occur immediately after having the dose or may even occur after a week or two after the treatment has stopped. The rashes develop on the abdomen first and may spread up to the legs, arms, chest, and face.

Around 10 percent of children who are treated with amoxicillin will experience rashes. Usually rashes develop only after the 5th day of treatment or in some cases it may take upt to 15 days for the rashes to develop. These symptoms will last from 1 to 6 days with an average of 3 days depending on the severity.

Treatment

Normally, amoxicillin rashes do not require treatment. In severe cases, however, treatment is necessary.

An oatmeal bath is the most simple and effective remedy. Add essential oil to ½ or 1 cup of plain oatmeal and mix thoroughly. Place it in a bag, put it in the tub, and run a hot bath. For better results, you can add buttermilk to it.

Several medications that treat amoxicillin rash are available by prescription, and a few more are available over-the-counter. Some of the medications include Benadryl, Atarax, and topical cortisone cream.

Drinking lots of water is also advised as extra water will help flush the antibiotics from your system. A person with a rash should drink at least 8 glasses of water every day.

Many people are allergic to penicillin or certain medications. Since Amoxicillin is a type of penicillin, it is necessary to inform the doctor about allergies you've developed in the past due to such medicines. Also, you should tell your doctor if a rash or other symptoms develop. The doctor will analyze the situation and may ask to discard or substitute the medication, if required.

Complications From Amoxicillin Rash

As discussed earlier, a reaction to amoxicillin can be mild, severe or even life-threatening. The following are the various forms of amoxicillin rash:

  1. Anaphylaxis: This is the most severe form of allergic reaction. It will not go away without treatment. In the initial form, hives and itching develop; gradually the lips, tongue and airways get swollen and the lungs tighten up. This makes it difficult to breathe. Eventually, the circulatory system collapses, causing death.

  2. Stevens-Johnson Syndrome: This is a serious condition when amoxicillin rash breaks out as blisters and reaches the mouth and mucous membranes. In such a situation, the person is likely to develop a skin infection as well. The condition can become very serious and may cause the patient to be admitted to an ICU.

  3. Erythematous rashes: These amoxicillin rashes are developed particularly in the individuals who are allergic to amoxicillin or other types of penicillin antibiotics. Symptoms include red raised bumps of around 1mm, some of which are flat and some of which are raised. In an advanced form, red circle-like lesions occur on the skin that are up to 1 cm in size.

  4. Exfoliative dermatitis: These forms of amoxicillin rash are also severe and requires medical attention. In this condition, the skin becomes red, with rashes that cause itching and scale formation. The person starts feeling weak, and temperature regulation becomes a problem.

  5. Other forms of amoxicillin rashes: Exanthematous pustulosis characterized by small pus-filled blisters all over the body. Hypersensitivity vasculitis causes inflammation in the blood vessels, and red spots are developed just below the skin surface.

Know When to Consult the Doctor

Mild Amoxicillin rash (small, flat red spots) do not require much attention but you should consult a doctor if they last for a long time. Also, if the patient develops other symptoms of an allergic reaction, like shortness of breath, feeling unwell or drained, swelling on the lips, mouth or tongue or loss of consciousness, then medical attention is necessary.

Amoxicillin Rash Pictures

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