Slideshows Images Quizzes
font size

Keratosis Pilaris (KP)

Medical Author:
Medical Editor:

Keratosis pilaris (KP) facts

  • Keratosis pilaris is a very common, benign skin disorder that affects adolescents and adults.
  • Keratosis pilaris causes numerous small, rough, tan or red little skin conditions around hair follicles on the upper arms, thighs, buttocks, and cheeks.
  • Keratosis pilaris creates the appearance of gooseflesh, goose bumps, or chicken skin.
  • Keratosis pilaris is seen in patients with dry skin conditions and atopic dermatitis.
  • Keratosis pilaris is not curable but spontaneously improves over time.
  • Keratosis pilaris tends to be inherited.
  • Keratosis pilaris generally requires ongoing maintenance therapy.

What is keratosis pilaris?

Keratosis pilaris is a very common skin disorder affecting people of all ages. Keratosis pilaris is a benign condition that is characterized by numerous small, rough, red, or tan bumps primarily around hair follicles on the upper arms, legs, buttocks, and sometimes cheeks. Keratosis pilaris creates a "goose bumps," "gooseflesh," or "chicken skin" appearance. Keratosis pilaris may be cosmetically displeasing, but it is medically entirely harmless. Keratosis pilaris is common in otherwise healthy people.

Who gets keratosis pilaris?

Anyone can have keratosis pilaris. Although it is commonly a skin condition of children and adolescents, it is also seen in many adults. Females may be more frequently affected than males. The age of onset is often within the first 10 years of life and may worsen during puberty. However, keratosis pilaris may begin at any age. Keratosis pilaris seems to be inherited. It has been commonly been seen in twins. Keratosis pilaris is also seen in patients with atopic dermatitis and patients with very dry skin.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/1/2017


Women's Health

Find out what women really need.

Use Pill Finder Find it Now See Interactions

Pill Identifier on RxList

  • quick, easy,
    pill identification

Find a Local Pharmacy

  • including 24 hour, pharmacies

Interaction Checker

  • Check potential drug interactions
Search the Medical Dictionary for Health Definitions & Medical Abbreviations

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors