Heat or allergic reaction to antimalarials?

Patient: I have been in south east Asia for two months, taking 100mg of doxycycline daily for antimalarials. After around two weeks I noticed lots of small white head spots on my shoulders. They do not burst or pop like a pimple. They can be sore and sometimes itchy. They are very unsightly. They have spread to my jaw line also and I have had some on my chest and the tops of my arms. I don’t know if it is a reaction to the doxy or the heat, humidity and dust or even suncream. I had a similar reaction 4 years ago whilst visiting the same countries, it cleared up once I was home but I never knew what caused it. I showed a pharmacist in Cambodia he had poor English and all he could suggest was antihistamine.




Symptoms: Spots, rash

Doctor: Such eruptions are unlikely due to allergy. They are commonly seen due to heat and can be easily managed by local applic ation of lacto-calamine lotion. In some cases, due to persistent itching, folliculitis (infection/inflammation of the hair follicles) may cause pain. Your dermatologist may prescribe you a course of antibiotics to resolve such infection.


Ask The Doctor
Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

Dr. Suneel Sharman completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Toronto. He currently operates Infinity Health Centre, a walk-in-clinic in downtown Toronto.

View all posts