Granuloma Annulare Treatments

Granuloma annulare treatments are typically very effective. Granuloma Annulare, also known as necrobiotic papulosis, is characterized by raised reddish or skin-colored bumps in ring patterns. It most often appears on the hands, wrists, feet, and ankles, although it can occur anywhere on the body. The condition is not painful or itchy, but many patients feel self-conscious about the lesions, which may morph and move over time, especially those on the hands. Additionally, a person with granuloma annulare may feel extra pain and sensitivity if the affected area is hit. Some cases of this condition resolve on their own within a year or two, but symptoms lasting longer than a few weeks should be evaluated by a dermatologist.


Causes of Granuloma Annulare

Scientists do not know the exact cause of granuloma annulare. However, we know it may be triggered by certain medications, skin injuries like insect or animal bites, viral infections like hepatitis, herpes, and HIV, vaccinations, tuberculin skin tests, and sun exposure. Widespread necrobiotic papulosis may occasionally be associated with thyroid disease, diabetes, tumors or HIV. The condition typically affects children, teenagers, and young adults more than adults.


Types and Symptoms

There are three main types of granuloma annulare. The most common type is isolated, with skin-colored lesions measuring up to 2 inches in diameter on the knuckles, hands, elbows, wrists, feet, and ankles of children and adolescents. By contrast, generalized granuloma annulare is often itchy and more widespread, often covering the trunk, armpits, arms, groin, and legs of adults. Finally, subcutaneous granuloma annulare most often involves small, painless lumps under the skin on the fingertips, hands, scalp, buttocks, and shins of children.

This condition can occur anywhere on the body, but it will only affect the skin. Sometimes, it will not have symptoms. In most cases, though, people with this condition will experience additional tenderness if the site of the annulare is hit or knocked. In general, these spots can slowly change shape, size, and position, but if you notice any significant changes in a short period of time, consult your dermatologist. This could be a sign of skin cancer.

When to See a Doctor for Granuloma Annulare Treatment

If you are unsure whether you have this condition, visit your dermatologist. Generally, granuloma annulare can be diagnosed by visual examination alone, but a skin biopsy may be required in some cases to rule out other conditions. Sometimes the lesions may disappear on their own in a few months, though widespread types of the condition may persist for years.

Granuloma annulare treatment options include topical corticosteroid ointments or injections, freezing the lesions with liquid nitrogen to stimulate new skin growth, and laser/light therapy. For severe and widespread lesions, antibiotics may be used. All of these treatment options for granuloma annulare require a doctor. If you are interested in having your condition treated, visit your dermatologist. Additionally, if you are unsure whether your lesion is benign, visit a doctor to receive a visual examination.

Contact us to schedule an appointment or virtual visit today.

*Results may vary per patient. Services vary by location.