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Pityriasis alba

What is it?

Pityriasis alba is a disease of unknown cause very common in people with personal or family history of atopy (asthma, bronchitis, allergic rhinitis, atopic eczema).

Characteristics and symptoms

The manifestations of Pityriasis alba arise mainly after intense sun exposure. The condition is characterized by whitish and rounded spots, finely scaly, with imprecise limits and often with a dotted appearance.

Because of the whitish spots, the disease is often mistaken for pityriasis versicolor. The most common locations are the face, trunk and upper limbs.

The lesions present no symptoms and skin dryness often accompanies the condition. More common in children, may also occur during adulthood. Remissions and reappearance of the lesions are frequent.


The skin moisturizing and use of sunscreen help prevent the onset of pityriasis alba. The prolonged and continuous exposure to the sun and the resulting sunburn should be avoided. A diet rich in vegetables and fruits and plenty drinking of fluids during the summer also help in prevention.

The correct treatment should be prescribed by the dermatologist and usually includes skin mosturizers and the use of topic mild corticosteroids for short periods.

Related articles

- Pityriasis versicolor
- Pityriasis rosea

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