- : Itching. Pruritus can result from drug reaction, food allergy, kidney or liver disease, cancers, parasites, aging or dry skin, contact skin reaction, such as poison ivy, and for unknown reasons.
* * *- p. aestivalis p. occurring during hot weather; may be associated with prickly heat. SYN: summer itch.- p. ani itching of varying intensity at the anus; may be paroxysmal or constant, associated with seborrheic dermatitis or moniliasis, with irritated and enlarged hemorrhoidal veins, or may occur independently of any cutaneous lesions in association with systemic disease.- aquagenic p. intense itching produced by brief contact with water at any temperature without visible changes in the skin.- bath p. itching produced by inadequate rinsing off of soap or by overdrying of skin from excessive bathing. SYN: bath itch.- p. gravidarum severe p. without associated rash occurring during pregnancy secondary to intrahepatic cholestasis and bile salt retention.- p. hiemalis SYN: winter itch.- p. vulvae itching of the external female genitalia, caused by a variety of factors, e.g., seborrheic dermatitis, allergy to local contactants, senile atrophy of the vulva, and occasionally systemic disease.
* * *pru·ri·tus prü-'rīt-əs n localized or generalized itching due to irritation of sensory nerve endings: ITCH
* * *n.itching. Mediated by histamine and other vasoactive chemicals, it is the predominant symptom of atopic eczema, lichen planus, and many other skin diseases. It also occurs in the elderly and may be a manifestation of psychological illness. Perineal itching is common: itching of the vulva in women (pruritus vulvae) may be accompanied by itching of the anal region (pruritus ani), although the latter is more common in men. Causes of perineal itching include poor hygiene, candidosis, threadworm, and itchy skin diseases (such as eczema). Pruritus also occurs as a symptom of certain systemic disorders, such as chronic renal failure, cholestasis, and iron deficiency. Treatment of pruritus is determined by the cause.
* * *pru·ri·tus (proo-riґtəs) [L., from prurire to itch] 1. an unpleasant cutaneous sensation that provokes the desire to rub or scratch the skin to obtain relief. Called also itching. 2. any of various conditions marked by this sensation; see also itch.
Medical dictionary. 2011.