Skip to Content
Home > Wellness > Health Library > Contact Dermatitis
Contact dermatitis is inflammation of the skin caused by contact
with a substance that causes an allergic reaction. A minor case of contact
dermatitis may cause mild redness of the skin or a rash of small red bumps,
while a more severe reaction may cause swelling, redness, and larger blisters.
A rash usually starts about 48 hours after exposure to the
irritating substance. Common causes of contact dermatitis include:
The location of the rash may provide a clue about the cause.
Contact dermatitis does not usually occur with the first exposure
to the irritating substance (allergen). After a reaction to the substance
occurs for the first time, a rash can occur in response to even very small amounts of the
Current as of:
February 5, 2016
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Amy McMichael, MD - Dermatology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2016 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
I Want To...
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.