Developed Spreading Pompholyx/Hand Eczema :(

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Heya all. Sorry for the wall of text.

In a nutshell:

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I've developed what I think is Pompholyx/Dyshydrosis/Hand Eczema on my left hand middle finger and it has spread and some bumps are now showing on the back of that hand too! sad I've been told "it's a type of eczema" by the doctors, by researching into it myself I am assuming it is Pomphloyx as the symptoms match.

Story:

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When I was little I suffered badly with eczema on the backs of my legs. I also got and still get dry skin on the face and very dry flaky scalp.

The eczema on the back of my legs eventually went and through the years I've had little flare ups or dry red patches here and there, mainly on my neck where a necklace would rub etc... but nothing that would just go away after a while and nothing that I'd consider needed treatment. I am now 24, going on 25.

About 2 months ago, I was down visiting my boyfriend in London and we planned to go to Thorpe Park together on his motorcycle for 2 days, staying at a hotel overnight.

It was scorching hot those days, hitting the 30C with little shade and packed queues. I did get quite dehydrated the first day and was very hot. I felt a little ill at the end of that day but we had to get geared up again to ride to the hotel. My neck was very sore and I looked in the mirror at the hotel only to see a massive ring of red all around my neck with weeping oozy areas. I was so so sore. The 2nd day I tried to keep cooler and kept checking up on my neck. I kept my necklace off. I also got ezcema flaring up on my left wrist too.

After coming home from London, I booked an appointment with the doc and he gave me some steroid cream (Locoid Lipocream 0.1% w/w) and some Balneum cream to moisturize. I have seen great improvement and only a little redness shows now, occasionally flaring up when I get hot. My wrist eczema spread a little and is still there.

Now moving on to my worries of the hand eczema. Just before I went down to london, I was at a car boot sale with my family. It was another scorching hot Sunday hitting atleast 30C again. I kept looking at my middle finger on my left hand as I felt a little prickly on the skin above the nail. After that day, the skin started to peel back, more and more. After getting the creams from the doctor for my neck I used some of the moisturizer on my finger too for a few weeks to see if it helped. After a few weeks, my finger had peeled even more and was starting to go around the sides. I was getting worried. Little bubbles with fluid in were appearing and some where filled with yellow pussy fluid. It looked infected so I went back to the doctors but saw a different doctor who was available. He gave me another steroid for my finger called Fucibert Cream 2% w/w which has a antibiotic in it too. He told me I would see results in a few days.

Within 3 days the yellow pussy bumps had cleared up and the skin was smooth but still red and inflamed. I slowly started coming off of it as he didn't say how long to use it for. Since then the little bumps have come back and has spread more and more around my finger to the point where the eczema is almost joining on the underneath now. It is dry and cracked and I can't fully bend my finger.

I went back to the doctor I saw firstly a week ago and he had a look. He told me to continue using the locoid lipocream on my neck and wrist and also on my finger. He also has sent for me to be Patch tested and I'm waiting for the date to come through for that.

Tonight I have been sitting at the computer and now have noticed small bumps appearing further back on the middle finger and some on the back of that hand! I'm so worried about it because I really don't want it to be like the end of my finger all over my hand! sad It's started to make me feel depressed.

I work at Tesco supermarket on the tills and already feel embarrassed when people see my finger for fear they might think it's disgusting or something as it can become even more dry there from the air conditioning and heating even though I put cream on.

Again, sorry for the wall of text and thank you for taking the time to read it. I have taken some pictures of it, (Hopefully the link will work) http://s1114.photobucket.com/user/bexyboo88/slideshow/My%20Pompholyx

I know it's nowhere near as bad as others who have it, I'm just scared in case it gets worse.

If anyone could give any support and advice on this condition I'd be really grateful.

Thanks

Bex

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  • Posted

    Hi. I see you posted this back in October, on my birthday actually. I was wondering how everything was going? Did you get an allergy test? Please write back, as I have some info I'd like to share, if you haven't already figured out the problem. Hope you are doing better.

    -H

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  • Posted

    Perhaps you should be evaluated for dermatomyositis and or undifferentiated connective tissue disease. I started out with a disyhrodic eczema diagnosis, but that dermatologist turned out to be just WRONG.

    The meds I am on include: Cellcept and Hydrocychloroquine (skin and autoimmune response as well as Prednisone (inflammation), and aspirin (for joing pain). I have gotten to be almost back to normal---maybe about 90% and I only started the Cellcept a few months ago.

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  • Posted

    Heya guys, Thanks for the replies.

    Since first posting my eczema has been spreading sad It's all around my left middle finger and down to the in between web part of the finger is which is sore. Its on the back of my hand and spread across to other fingers on my right hand too. The patches on my wrist have combined into one big red area.

    I received my letter through from the hospital finally the other day and the date for my tests is 29th of Jan 2014. Some days it's not too bad but today my finger is sore and I can't bend it again. I have no idea if its an allergy or something else. I was thinking about keeping notes on the stuff I eat and substances that come in contact with my hands so I can tell them when I go to the hospital in case its helpful.

    smarq9000, I will look into what you said and may bring it up when I go there. Really glad to hear you're nearly all cleared up, what a relief it must be!!

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  • Posted

    I just remembered that I have used medicated creams to use on my hands and feet. Please ask your MD about: Clobetasol Proprianate, Vectical, Vanos. Also, you may have a food or chemical allergy. You can get screened for with a dermatologist for chemicals and and ENT for foods, pollens, molds. I also got a nutrition deficiency test to see if I was low in Vitamin D and now take Vitamin D, so ask your doc about large dose Vitamin D for your skin. I actually have a nickel allergy, so I avoid washing my hands with unfiltered tap water. I use Cerave soap and moisturizer. I found a low-nickel diet online through a google search. Also, you should avoid hot water, steam rooms, and hot stone massage. I try using lightweight black cotton gloves wherever I go, even in hot months, in order to avoid touching my keys, doorknobs, which are allergy triggers. Use vinyl gloves (disposable) to shower, clean house, wash dishes. Try to minimize the number of times you wash hands each day. I used to wash my hands 100 times a day. I am down to 10-20 times now. I am in healthcare, and still can wash my hands between patients. I do not use hand sanitizer, which I found is a trigger.
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  • Posted

    Also---do not go to tanning beds or lay in the sun until you figure out what you do have.
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  • Posted

    I've taken off my watch and necklaces thinking originally that was what might be causing it and haven't been wearing them for months now but as I say, it's still spreading. I'm finding new patches almost every day it seems and it makes me feel so depressed which is not helpful also.

    I don't ever use tanning beds and sun doesn't exist very much here in the UK right now, lots of rain and wind at the mo hehe smile

    Today I've been trying to get my finger healed quicker ready for work tomorrow. I've been applying the emollient almost every hour, but in turn the cream makes my eczema look very reddened so it really stands out. I hate it when it's like that in case people stare at work.

    As I work on the checkouts I do have to deal with coins a lot so maybe that doesn't help.

    The eczema on my neck today has been playing it and it seems to have really flared. It's itchy dry and feels like any minute it will all start weeping again. I woke up and when I looked in the mirror it I could tell and it had extra red spots on my chest. I think I'm going to have to resort to the steroid cream for it all again, I really don't want to use it though sad

    My face feels a little sensitive too. I've eaten quite a few sugary things, (3 cupcakes, custard, Chocolate bar, lemon tea with sugar) and that might be why. I will definately have to cut out the rubbish for a few days and see how it goes. I've started a diary of what I eat and when I apply creams and notes on how my eczema is so it might help me a little more.

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  • Posted

    The face sensitivity might be caused by the chocolate. Maybe try some cotton gloves during checking....the face rash could be rosacea.
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  • Posted

    Bexyboo,

    Sorry I didn't get back on here until now. I just looked at your pics and that looks very much like psoriasis, not eczema. I know they seem similar but I know someone with psoriasis and I've worked in the medical field for awhile and that actually is way to "scaly" (for lack of a better word) than eczema usually does. I just had a severe flareup of eczema from gluten I ate but it looks NOTHING like your pics, not even on its worst day. I say you look online for more info about psoriasis and try removing things from your diet for a couple weeks at a time to see if you can't figure it out on your own and, at least, get some relief for awhile. I think the diary is great, it helps you and the doctor. I do still think you should consider gluten. That allergy is more common because the products made are increasing in their gluten and processed foods and flareups are popping up everywhere. Sugar is not healthy but I don't think it would cause that. Start with the more common allergies, gluten then eggs then dairy. Hopefully your tests show something. Please keep us posted and try to avoid fragrant soaps, laundry detergent, and cleaning products. Either wear gloves when cleaning or shop for products, especially soaps and body washes/shampoos with LOW PH, not just PH balanced but specifically LOW PH. Also, you may be interested in looking up amber and hazel bracelets for eczema. I spent forever trying to trust doctors with the answer and I know more about my body and what happens to it than they do. Best of luck and God bless.

    -H

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  • Posted

    Bexyboo,

    At first, I was misdiagnosed with psoriasis by a dermatologist--who swears by his observations. It is important to get second and even third opinions in your case. I had two other doctors say I had eczema. The fact that you ended up posting your message on the dermatomyositis page here is perhaps a blessing. My eczema was a part of having a mild case of dermatomyositis--which was still hard to pinpoint and get under control.

    In the interest of helping you rule out dermatomyositis or another connective tissue disease, it would still be good to get checked by a rheumatologist for autoimmune issues--a blood test and a physical exam. A dermatologist could confirm the skin issue once they have the blood test results to look at while examining you. Please also consider allergy testing--with a dermatologist and with an Ear, Nose, and Throat physician so you can get the full spectrum--from food, pollen, and mold to chemicals and metals. Gluten is a common allergy trigger, but so is nickel. And it takes more than a couple weeks to see if your body reacts to one food or chemical than another in many cases. I just want to save you time and effort--as well as a misdiagnosis. Also, you should have the dermatologist rule out sclerodactyly--another type of skin rash that is a part of autoimmune response. Your pictures may still not tell the whole story....Please consider seeing these doctors.

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  • Posted

    Hi, I have almost the exact thing you have. My doctors say it is pompholyx. I started off with blistered on my fingers and spread to my wrist and back of my hands. I felt is was food related. I did a home blood test to check for allergies as my doctor did not believe there was a link. I use Cam nutri blood test. Look up food detective to find the test if you are interested. I had multiple intolerances and removing these foods have calmed it down. And now in a process of healing. Also look into leaky gut and take probiotics, essential fatty oils and vitamin D to heal and repair from the inside.

    Hope your heals get better soon.

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  • Posted

    Thankyou for your replies.

    K28011, that's very interesting. I have no clue if mine is to do with food or not, I've read that food doesn't cause it but certain types can make it worse. I went to see my doctor just over a week ago again to show him how mine had spread. He told me to use the Fucibet steroid cream the other doctor game me for 1 week. It has healed up so nicely and I can bend my finger again. I started seeing results within 2 days. Thing is now I'm off of the steroid, it's likely it will flare up with vengeance again, but we'll see. I'm going for my patch tests soon, not sure what they'll be testing me on but I'd assume mainly chemicals and metals. I'm going to look up that food detective you said about, sounds interesting.

    I've been taking 2 5ml spoons of Cod liver oil daily and I tried taking some vit B complex supplements as I keep getting a recurring split in the corner of my mouth, which could be lack in Vit B, and it says it also helps immune functionality, hair and skin etc...

    Havn't tried Vit D but might be worth a shot, but I'll wait and see what the tests come back with first.

    I've also been eating some natural live yogurt too now and then. Not enough to probs make any difference though.

    My neck is definitely worsened I've noticed but anything touching it. I often sit with soft blankets wrapped around me, I've got synthetic furry scarf with made it flare up, coat collar, Work uniform collar, or just any kind of clothing that is against it. Could be detergent but I think it's more likely just the rubbing against it making it worse.

    My face is back to normal after a week or so after it got sore. It's actually really smooth and softer than normal too. I've been using Simple Cleanser, Tone & Moisturizer most nights and it's great stuff. My face looks so clear.

    I also tried an oat bath for the first time on wednesday. I put the oats in a food processor and make them as fine as I could and put them in the Warm bath. It did make my skin feel nice and not "tight" like it would be when I have a shower. I'm going to continue these oat baths every wednesday. Even if it doesn't improve the eczema, its really relaxing anyways and a nice change from just having showers.

    I hope yours heals and you manage to clear it up, with or without the docs help! smile

    I'll keep you all updated.

    Bex

    -x-

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  • Posted

    Hello,

    can you try ego's QV Hand Cream? I am in Australia but you might be able to find it online or a aussie pharmacy website. It's helping my hand eczema, though very frustrated. So does not washing hands (eek). Beware medical creams can thin the skin and make your problem worse down the track. Also consider lifestyle I hope it hasn't been dusty or something which flares mine badly. You need to sit people down and explain the condition.

    Cheers, good luck.

    Hibiscus.

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  • Posted

    Hi everyone,

    So just a little update about whats going on. I went to see the dermatologist at the Hospital on Wednesday. She asked me about when and where it all started, what products do I use and where do I work. She had a look at it on my hands and arms, around my neck and I showed her a few little patches on the back of my leg.

    She told me I will need to be booked in for patch testing so the assistant booked me in but I have to wait till the end of March! *Sigh* She told me my back is a little dry for the patch test to stick to so really focus on moisturizing it. She has written down for my doctor to prescribe me 3 things, which I will pick up on Tuesday.

    I Can't remember the names of 2 of them as I've handed the form in already, but one is Double Base Gel, One is an Ointment for use with bathing and at night (Which she described as "Disgusting, like goose fat and will make a mess!" Very encouraging haha) and one is a steroid cream that I have to use once a day for 2-3 weeks gradually coming off of it and increasing the frequency.

    She then wrote down the name of 2 products which I can buy myself which are apparently very good for dry skin without reacting. One is called 'Neutrogena Hand Cream Unscented' and the other is called 'Avene Cold Cream'.

    She then told me that it may be related to something I'm breathing in too and asked if I used any home air fresheners (Occasionally) or plugins and If there were any mold around the house (Window sill & Shower) and if I had any pets (A dog).

    She wrote down the info on a blood test form and I had to go have that done on the day. Bruised arm now haha.

    So thats about all thats going on at the mo, Interested to know the result of the blood test and gotta wait for my patch tests, but I'll update again on how the creams, ointments ect.. are doing in a few weeks.

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  • Posted

    Hello!! So, I have seen two different dermatologists over the years, both told me I had eczema and both gave me steroid creams. I saw an allergist/immunologist back in 2011 and did the back scratch test for allergies and he ran labs. Part of those labs he ran, since I came in with a rash, was a full thyroid panel. Of all the thyroid labs checked, my thryoglobulin antibody came back elevated. They told me I had Hashimoto's disease. I thought they were crazy, I was only 28 years old. So... fast forward a couple of years dealing with gluten allergy and eczema, I have had this rash since November of last year. I have been on Prednisone and creams and another steroid dose pack and more creams. Finally I thought, I should check on that thyroid thingy again and sure enough, over the last couple of weeks I have found out that I in fact do have Hashimoto's disease, it is an autoimmune thyroid disease, and I already have some damage to my thyroid! I am 30 years old but I finally feel like I may be on my way to feeling a whole lot better than I've felt in a long time. I am not saying you have a thyroid problem but if there is anyone in your family, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers/sisters, parents, any history in your family of an autoimmune disease (anything from Lupus, Rheumatoid arthritis, M.S., thyroid disease, diabetes type I, Crohn's or colitis) then you have a predisposition to having one, doesn't have to be the same as someone else's. Also, If I had continued to see dermatologists and had not gone to an immunologist who regularly checks thyroid panels for rashes, which are very common with Hashimoto's and hypothyroidism, as is dry skin, then I may very well have gotten worse one day and developed multiple autoimmune diseases. So, what I am trying to say is, it wouldn't hurt to say to your doctor, Please check a full thyroid panel, including TPO antibodies and thyroglobulin antiobies. TSH levels are often IN NORMAL LIMITS even when you have this disease so you have to check the antibodies. Best of luck to all of you suffering with skin issues, I know how awful they are and I encourage all of you to look into removing sugar and gluten from your diet for three weeks and getting someone to check your thyroid PANEL. Good luck! Blessings!!
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    • Posted

      Hi! i have had eczema and fatigue for the last 2 years and recently found out that i have high TPO antibodies/hashimoto's. It's great to hear that you're feeling better - I was wondering what you've done, aside from dietary changes, to get better.  I'm on the AIP diet - no gluten, no sugar, no grains, no nuts, no dairy, no eggs, no nightshades.  And after 4 months of that + supplements I"m still getting flare ups.  Thanks!
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