Skin inflammation that is located in a part of the fatty layer of skin us called Erythema nodosum and it results in reddish, painful, tender lumps which vary in size. These are most commonly located in the front of the legs below the knees. They could be inflamed on and off for weeks, then shrink and become flat, leaving behind bruise like appearance on the skin, where the fatty layer is injured.
It can go away on its own in a month or a month and a half, but the chronic condition may last for years with or without an underlying disease present.
Medications (sulfa-related drugs, birth control pills, estrogens), strep throat, Cat scratch disease, fungal diseases, infectious mononucleosis, sarcoidosis, Behcet’s disease, inflammatory bowel diseases (Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis), and normal pregnancy are conditions that are linked with erythema nodosum.
To diagnose, the doctor primarily does a physical exam, but a biopsy is taken for more thorough examination and is necessary to confirm the diagnosis of erythema nodosum.
In its early stages, Erythema nodosum is managed by identifying and treating any underlying condition, along with the skin lesions.
Treatment is customized for each patient and includes anti-inflammatory drugs and cortisone (mouth or injection.) Colchicine is sometime used effectively to reduce inflammation. This condition is annoying and painful, but isn’t a threat to internal organs and the prognosis is almost always very good.