Bottoms up! 5 skin problems commonly seen on the butt- Musings of an NYC Dermatologist

  • Posted on: Aug 23 2016
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Butt in pink panties

Don’t be shy. Sometimes your booty is the rooty of your skin problem.

We appreciate when patients behave well in the office, but sometimes it’s necessary for them to show the dermatologist their butts.  We are over the moon to share with you 5 common dermatologic conditions found on a person’s backside (buttocks):

Genital herpes sometimes presents instead on the buttocks

Genital herpes sometimes presents instead on the buttocks

  1. Genital herpes: If you have been getting a recurrent sore on the exact same place on the buttocks, it would be a good idea to get screened for genital herpes.  Genital herpes? On the buttocks?    After the primary infection with genital herpes, the virus lives dormant in the sacral ganglion in the lower spine.  When the virus reactivates, it travels down the nerve toward the genitals—but sometimes takes an alternate route to the skin on a branch of the sacral nerve that serves the buttocks.

    buttock folliculitis

    Acne on the butt? Well, not exactly.

  2. “acne”/folliculitis- “Butta face?” About 10% of people have a follicular papules on their buttocks.  It’s not exactly like the acne vulgaris we usually see on the face, which technically starts with microscopic white heads, but a kind of irritant folliculitis.  This may respond to benzoyl peroxide wash, antiperspirants, or antibiotics.

    Keratosis pilaris- something both your arms and butt may have in common

    Keratosis pilaris- something both your arms and butt may have in common

  3. Keratosis pilaris- If you have the red or brown, scaly, follicular papules on the backs of your arms, you may also get them on the thighs and buttocks.  These lesions are a normal finding on some people.  It can be difficult to treat keratosis pilaris.  Sometimes exfoliating creams, such as 6% salicyclic acid cream or physical exfoliation can make the skin smoother—but the effects are usually temporary.
    Psoriasis? Yes.

    Psoriasis? Yes.

     

  4. Psoriasis- There are a variety of “red rashes” that dermatologists see that may look the same.    Drug eruptions. Pityriasis rosea.  Syphilis.  Pityriasis rubra pilaris…and psoriasis.  Sometimes the key to distinguishing them is the presence of gluteal pinking, which is involvement of the fold between the cheeks of the buttocks.

    buttocks mycosis fungoides

    Mycosis fungoides- a types of skin cancer that sometimes presents only on the butt.

  5. Cancer…specifically mycosis fungoides:  Mycosis fungoides is a relatively uncommon type of skin lymphoma that can look like eczema or psoriasis.  This condition typically involves the “double covered” areas of the body that get less sun such as the breasts in women, as well as the hips and buttocks.  This condition can persist for decades without changing life expectancy, but in some cases it is more aggressive causing sickness and death.

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Posted in: General Dermatology