HIV Problem Skin

When suffering from HIV, problem skin can become an equally worrisome part of your health.

In patients with HIV, skin rashes are the most immediate sign of the impact of HIV on skin. Apart from such skin rashes, HIV might also bring along other evident instances of HIV problem skin in the form of silvery patches, pink and pearly bumps, papules, pustules, warts , blisters and finally HIV skin lesions.

For patients with HIV, skin disease can occur due to one of the following three reasons:

• Interaction between the immune system and HIV - In patients with HIV, skin symptoms first appear as a non-itchy, red rash. Since the immune system will already be in a weak state, such symptoms of HIV on skin will continue to aggravate and can develop into a chronic condition, marked by red and itchy patches, showing a clear correlation between skin rashes and HIV.

• Bacterial, fungal and viral infections.

• Side effects of drugs – HIV and skin allergies go hand in hand and further rashes and other problems might occur as a result of the side effects of drugs taken to treat HIV.

Interestingly, in individuals suffering from HIV, problem skin can begin to show improvements once recovery sets in after treatment.

A typical HIV skin problem at this stage will be marked by a related HIV skin condition such as acne , folliculitis or any other infection of the follicles.


Here, we’ve discussed the most common skin conditions related to HIV and explained a few important facts on each one of them.

• Warts – Related to HIV, problem skin is most commonly seen in the form of warts. They can generally appear anywhere along the body and can range from 1mm to 1-2 cms in size.

• Folliculitis – Mostly seen as a HIV skin symptom in the form of itchy, red bumps, the swollen papules of folliculitis and can be suitably treated with anti-acne medications.

• Molluscum Contagiosum – Almost as common as warts, this is an HIV skin disorder in the form of molluscum contagiosum, which is widely seen on the face and neck and can often be quite difficult to manage.

• Seborrheic Dermatitis, Psoriasis , Tinea – Quite similar in appearance to each other, such a condition, HIV skin related produces erythema and plaques almost in all parts of the body.

• Scabies – As a related outcome of HIV aids, skin can also begin to show signs of scabies on the wrists, webs between fingers, folds of skin, even face and scalp.

• Herpes viruses - These develop as grouped, blister-like lesions caused by the common herpes simplex virus, eventually developing into chronic ulcers and fissures. In fact, in patients of this disease, HIV skin issues like these can also lead to perpetual oedema and extreme pain and discomfort in the effected regions.

By Jasmin Pannu

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