Verify: How Does Poison Ivy Spread?

Verify: Can poison ivy spread?

If you run into poison ivy and get a rash, does scratching it cause it to spread? That's what we wanted to verify.

Step through the woods and be aware of the dangers -- dangers that come in threes -- leaves of three that is, bringing about a nasty outcome, according to Dr. Davis Plaxico M.D from The Allergy and Asthma Clinic in Macon.

"it will start off as a rash a kind of red raised rash, and be very itchy, and the more you itch, it really becomes very painful."

But it doesn't end there, Plaxico says. When you feel the burn once, you're more likely set up to give in to the vine's wrath again.

"Next time they touch it, it gets there again, in generally the same place, and that's when the blisters come."

How can you detect it? Raymond Carnley, Director of Safe Scouting for the Boy Scouts of America trailed through the woods, where it didn't take long to find.

It's those serrated edges, and "maroonish" vines that secrete an oil. Once the oil makes contact with skin, that causes the rash. If the oil or the clothes with oil on it touches another part of your skin, it will create another rash there.

So it's verified, scratching a poison ivy rash won't cause it to spread, only initial exposure will.

Carnley says if your clothes get exposed to the oil, immediately wash them with warm water and dish soap.

 

 

© 2017 WMAZ-TV


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