A vesicular lesion is a blister on the skin or another organ. Friction, burns, chemical exposure, and infections can all cause vesicular lesions of various shapes and sizes. The blister may resolve on its own with time or could require treatment, depending on the cause of the lesion. Patients with large lesions that do not go away, increase in number, or appear to change in color or shape should see a dermatologist or doctor for evaluation.
A classic vesicular lesion consists of a thin bubble of fluid under the skin. The lesion may crackle or pop if it is large, and patients can experience pain and discomfort. The surrounding area may be red and hot, indicative of inflammation. If the blister ruptures, it will leak white, clear, or yellow fluid and expose the underlying skin. Premature rupture can expose patients to the risk of infection because the skin underneath is not fully healed.
Friction is a common cause of a vesicular lesion. People breaking in new shoes or using tools they are not familiar with may notice a few blisters at the end of the day. Burns and chemical exposures are another cause. It is important to flush the skin after such injuries and to avoid picking at any lesions that appear, as they protect the skin while it heals. If a blister is especially large or painful, a doctor can treat it in sterile conditions to drain off the fluid and make the patient feel more comfortable.
Infections are another likely cause, in which case the patient needs treatment for the infection to resolve the problem. Herpes viruses like chicken pox and genital herpes are commonly associated with vesicular lesions. Patients can also develop this type of lesion in response to infections with other microbes like parasites. A doctor will need to examine the lesion and run some tests to find out what is happening and prescribe an appropriate medication to treat the infection.
Managing this condition can be hard, because patients often want to pick or scratch. There are topical preparations available to soothe itching and burning. Some patients may find it helpful to soak in a bathtub with baking soda when the itching becomes severe. Bandaging is another option, as is wearing gloves to prevent picking. Picking can expose patients to the risk of infection and scarring. In the case of young patients who do not understand the concerns, it can help to provide distractions to prevent scratching.