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Dermatographism on the arm

Dermatographism on the arm


Dermatographism is a condition where lightly scratching the skin raises wheals or welts. Histamine is released at the site, causing the small blood vessels (capillaries) to dilate, producing redness and localized swelling.

Review Date 3/14/2016

Updated by: Stuart I. Henochowicz, MD, FACP, Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Division of Allergy, Immunology, and Rheumatology, Georgetown University Medical School, Washington, DC. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.