Speaking of rashes....me too. I went to the dermatologist yesterday for a myriad of rash issues. Mine may be a reaction to a recent prescription (allopurinol for gout). He took a biopsy - a lovely experience which is akin to someone taking a surgical-edged melon baller and scooping out a chunk of your flesh. And of course I now have three new medications to use while waiting for the biopsy results. Doctors....gotta love'em. This dermo is an osteopath. Not to be confused with a psychopath.
I am confident this is a reaction to the new meds. It is a rash.
And as for gout....no, it isn't contagious. But if you ever get it, you are screwed. It will go away and then come back every so often, usually at a bad time. The pain is truly the worst thing any man has ever experienced unless he has been shot or stabbed. A woman told me it was the closest a man could come to the pain of natural childbirth without drugs.
Dave - my husband takes Allopurinol for his gout. Sorry to hear you're having a reaction, coz it's sure helping him. Try drinking cherry juice (real juice, not "juice drink"), and stay away from purines (cold cuts, hot dogs, processed meats). Good luck! I know what it's like living with someone going through a bout o'gout...