Healthy Living

Heat Rash: What Is Miliaria Profunda?

Miliaria profunda

Heat Rash: What Is Miliaria Profunda?

Key Takeaways

  • Rashes are often referred to as miliaria or prickly heat.
  • Miliaria profunda is a type of heat rash that happens when there is blockage of the sweat ducts located in the middle region of your skin.
  • Unlike other types of heat rashes, miliaria profunda is the most severe. 

Heat rash is a generic term used to describe a skin infection that is caused by an intense heat exposure to the skin. As a result of the body being exposed to too much heat, there is excess sweating.

This excess sweat mostly blocks the sweat glands, which leads to the trapping of perspiration in the inner skin layers. Once the sweat is accumulated inside the skin, it causes rashes that mostly appear as tiny blisters or bumps.

What is miliaria profunda?

This is one of the types of heat rashes. Rashes are often referred to as miliaria or prickly heat. Miliaria profunda happens when there is blockage of the sweat ducts located in the middle region of your skin, which is called the dermis. It is difficult for the tissues in this region of the skin to be blocked. This condition is usually seen in people who have experienced repeated cases of miliaria. They are mostly people living in hot areas.

Who are at risk?

The people who are likely to suffer from this condition are those that experience too much sweating for a long time. This gives enough time for the inner parts of their skin to be blocked. The following are some individuals who are more likely to have this condition: 

  • Military troops 
  • Athletes
  • Overweight and obese people
  • Bedridden patients
  • Babies
  • People living in hot or humid environments

Symptoms of Miliaria Profunda

Unlike other types of heat rashes, miliaria profunda is the most severe. The patient will experience harsh symptoms as compared to having other types of heat rash. Its symptoms may include:

  • Having big bumps, especially after sweating
  • Fresh-colored papules
  • Fever
  • Heat exhaustion
  • Pink or red patches
  • Large welts
  • Itching and irritation of the skin

What skin areas are generally affected?

Like other heat rash-related conditions, any part of your body can be affected. Any person can have the infection. However, the areas where there is skin folding are more prone to have rashes. The usual affected areas include the neck, abdomen, breasts, elbow folds, face, back, and buttocks.

What makes it worse?

Miliaria can worsen depending on the following factors:

  • High humidity
  • Fever
  • Sunburn
  • Tight clothes 
  • High temperatures
  • Application of creams, perfumes, and body oils that can trigger allergic reactions
  • Excessive physical exercise

Treatment Measures for Miliaria Profunda

  • Taking cool showers
  • Being in an air-conditioned room, especially when working
  • Avoid wearing of very tight clothes that do not allow evaporation of sweat
  • Use creams such as hydrocortisone and lotions that can help in treating the rash
  • Oral antihistamines
  • Use of antibiotics to fight any bacterial infections that might be in your skin
  • Use of cool packs especially during very hot days

The Bottom Line

Heat rash is considered as a mild condition that goes away within a few days. However, repeated occurrence by other types of prickly heat such as miliaria crystalline and miliaria rubra can lead to miliaria profunda. In cases where treatment does not work, visit a doctor to test for other skin infections.