Petechia: classification, symptoms and manifestations, diagnosis, treatment methods

If red dots appear on the dermal surface, then this should be noted. It is necessary to get advice from a specialist. Sometimes it can be a symptom of a systemic( or infectious) disease.

Features of the

Disturbance of capillaries allows you to get a small portion of blood under your skin - so there are small points of red color( petechiae). Small, frozen, subcutaneous bruises are created as a result of an inadequate functioning blood coagulation system.

Another mechanism for the appearance of petechiasis on the skin is possible. As a result of pathological processes in the body, erythrocytes leak through the walls of the capillaries into the nearest tissues.

Petechia on the skin( photo)

Petechia classification

Petechia are:

  • single,
  • multiple.

Possible spot localization:

  • face,
  • oral cavity( mucosa),
  • trunk,
  • conjunctiva of the eye,
  • cutaneous surface of the legs,
  • of the same hands,
  • eyelids,
  • earlobe.

Also distinguish petechiae:

  • primary specks - formed as a subcutaneous bruise,
  • secondary specks - when penetration of red blood cells from the capillaries into the tissue occurred.

Causes of

Occurrence of petechiae can provoke factors of different nature. Some diseases are capable of causing such reactions of the body( petechiae):

  • tumor processes,
  • capillarotoxicosis,
  • disease, infectious nature:
    • cytomegalovirus infection,
    • mononucleosis,
    • endocarditis,
    • angina,
    • scarlet fever,
    • sepsis,
    • meningitis,
    • smallpox,
    • typhus;
  • hypercortisone( hormonal dysfunction),
  • leukopenia,
  • thrombocytopenia,
  • hypovitaminosis,
  • drug use,
  • pediatric scurvy.

Petechia can be a side effect of medical interventions:

  • radiotherapy,
  • mesotherapy,
  • drug administration for a long time:
    • indomethacin,
    • atropine,
    • penicillin,
    • heparin,
    • naproxen,
    • warfarin;
  • chemotherapy.

Causes of capillary rupture as a result of physical effects on them:

  • Petechiae may appear in small numbers during intensive weightlifting.
  • Injury is the most common cause that contributes to the appearance of petechiae. Damage to the integrity of the walls of the capillaries makes it possible to get a small amount of blood out of the vessels.
  • Clothing that causes inconvenience, including, because it does not fit in size, is capable of initiating the appearance of petechiae.
  • Stress in the body, for example, at the time of a severe cough, can cause a break in the capillaries on the face.
  • Aging of the skin promotes the formation of specks.
  • Stress can create tension that will provoke the appearance of petechiae.

Symptoms of

Petechia are spots on the cutaneous or mucous surface that have such signs:

  • do not protrude above the surface,
  • is not detected on palpation,
  • are small in size - up to two millimeters,
  • is painted first in bright color( crimson or red), but eventually turn pale( become brownish) and often disappear themselves;
  • after pressing the spot does not disappear.

Symptoms in children and adults are identical - the appearance of reddish points. Children provoke petechia can injure muscle tissue( and as a result of capillaries) during games or childhood illnesses( with whooping cough - from a strained cough).

Are a spot on the skin with hives, petechiae or purpura, this video will tell:


The specialist sets himself the task of determining the cause that initiated the appearance of petechiae. It should be understood whether behind the appearance of spots an infectious disease, systemic disease or petechiae arose from the physical effect on the tissues.

It is taken into account:

  • whether the patient contacted infectious patients,
  • what medicines were taken,
  • , whether there were falls, bruises, or trauma;
  • in what environment is the patient,
  • is the patient inclined to allergies,
  • which infectious diseases were ill earlier,
  • appearance of the petechiae, their number;
  • as the process of appearance of specks develops,
  • were vaccinated.

To clarify the diagnosis, a specialist can prescribe:

  • analysis for microorganisms and antibodies,
  • general blood test,
  • coagulogram,
  • bone marrow biopsy.

Treatment of

If spots appear after a bruise, then, as a rule, they pass by themselves. In the case when petechiae signals the presence of the disease, the doctor aims the treatment course to overcome this ailment.

Petechia in

Therapeutic way

  • A cold compress is applied to the bruised area. The time of applying ice( wrapped in a towel) is 15 minutes.
  • Patients who are weakened from the disease, are prescribed general restorative therapy( vitamins, globulins).


The doctor recommends taking medications:

  • antihistamines( in the course of treatment) - with an allergic reaction of the body;
  • antibiotics( as part of the course of treatment) - with an infectious disease;
  • if the patient has an autoimmune disease, then a course is prescribed:
    • corticosteroids,
    • vasoconstrictor,
    • desensitizing drugs.


If the petechiae are secondary, they do not disappear on their own. They are recommended to be deleted. The operation belongs to the category of cosmetic procedures.

Prevention of the disease

To avoid the appearance of petechia, it is necessary to take preventive actions:

  • not to allow injuries and bruises,
  • to exclude tight clothes from your wardrobe,
  • to eat healthy foods and vitamins that help strengthen the walls of blood vessels,
  • to try to treat the emerging diseases in time,chronic course.

Complications of

In severe cases, petechiae can spread throughout the body and cause fever. Sometimes it comes to fainting. A person can have a delusional state and cramps.

Such phenomena occur more often with children. Also for systemic diseases( autoimmune) in a sick person, it can happen:

  • cardialgia,
  • dyspnea,
  • pain in the joints and muscles.


If the petechiae is caused by mechanical damage, the spots will eventually pass by themselves. Petechia caused by various diseases can disappear if the cause of their occurrence is eliminated. The prognosis depends on whether it is possible to cure the disease that triggered the appearance of specks.

More information about the petechiae can be found in the video below:

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