Itchy type of Granuloma Annulare

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I had the most severe itching for almost 2 months before my primary Dr. thought I had scabies and I went through treatment for it. You can still itch after treatment which I was. The dermatologist report from biopsy came back saying I had GA. I thought perhaps I had both that and the scabies. When I broke out it was all over my body from scratching, except my face and not much on my back. It was like bites going down a line. The only thing that stops the itching is prednisone pills. I had almost lowered the dose to the point of stopping but then I had a flare up in itching, but my itching has only resulted in a few bumps. The rest are going away.

I am wondering if anyone else has had the itching variety or a similar story with possibly scabies involved. Also my dermatologist wants me to take potassium iodide as the cure which I am concerned about doing because I have a hypothyroid condition. Has any one ever done that treatment?

Thanks and I hope you all heal quickly!

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  • Posted

    To robin 43750: I had never heard of potassium iodide for GA, but I can respond to the hypothyroid/potassium iodide concern from personal experience.  I take one Iodoral High Potency Iodine/Potassium Iodide Supplement (12.5 mg) tablet per day as well as thyroid medication prescribed by my doctor (Naturethroid and compounded T3).  There is much literature now about the thyroid and iodine; for example, both my doctor and I have read Dr. Brownstein's book (I purchased from Amazon).  I took the Iodoral before seeing a doctor to try to help my thyroid myself, and she never told me to stop, just kept testing every three months and adjusting her thyroid medications.

    Having said that, I must add that I do have non-itching GA, but I don't remember if it appeared before or after I started taking 12.5 mg Iodoral tablets.  In any case, that dosage of Iodoral has not made my GA go away.  That doesn't mean whatever potassium iodide your doctor wants you to take won't make your GA go away, of course.  I just wanted you to know that I took/take Iodoral for thyroid on a won't-hurt-may-help basis without any problems, in case you want to investigate your doctor's suggestion further. 

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    • Posted

      Thank-you Joy for your well written response. I decided to stop taking the potassium/iodide even before my primary Dr. and I investigated that the only case study done on it were 8 individuals, four of which were given the potassium iodide and 4 were given a placebo and none improved.  This seems like an example from what I have read of how little research seems to have been done on GA.

      For now I continue to take the methlprednisone 8mg a day to control the itching which is still bad unless I keep medicated and I use a lot of moisturizers.

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  • Posted

    Hi Robin,

    Sorry for the delay, my computer has been dead for a while.  I have been to at least 3 doctors and I have not ever been diagnosed with scabies but I have been biopsied several time and the doctors seem confident of the diagnosis, if not the cure.  I can tell you that my GGS outbreaks are extremly itchy, and also painful, it feels like your skin is bubbling and the only thing I've had help even a little is to put ice on them.   I have a very mild thyroid issue so I would not take any medication that might be an issue for that because I can say that with all the people ive chatted with very few have had good success with any drug.  I'm seeing a holistic person now who says this is our body's way of telling us something is wrong and we have to find the cause or you will never get the cure.  For me it is for sure what I'm eating as even one crumb of gluten will set my skin lesions off on a firestorm of itching.  Also, I allowed one dermo to inject me with steroid and now have severe fat atrophy in the area that can only be corrected with plastic surgery.  So USE caution.  It did nothing for the GGA it just spread out in a bigger spot.  Which is going away now but the damage to the original area is permanent.   Good Luck and keep trying.  It's a very slow trial and error process.

     

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    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply Deb, So have you stopped itching as a result of not eating gluten?  How many weeks of going gluten free did it take to stop itching?  How many hours after eating gluten do you begin to itch?  Sorry for so many questions?  I appreciate knowing someone who actually seems to have the same, itchy type of GA as myself.

      I am still itching. It seemed like I got the itching down to just near my belly button, then I lessened my amount of prednisone and itching spread to whole torso and arms. What a whole pain this all is!

      Robin

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    • Posted

      I wouldn't worry too much about the fat atrophy. I had the same thing happen, the hole the steroid injection left looked like someone punched an orange halfway into my hip. It stayed indented for months but it's fine now. No one told me that could happen so I was pretty freaked out. Most every one on here has thyroid problems and granuloma, I think the thyroid could be the reason we have it. I've had granuloma annuare for about a year, only steroids make it go away but as soon as I quit it comes right back. Can't take anymore steriods, I have very bad bones.

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  • Posted

    Hi Robin,  No problem, glad to answer anything I can, hoping the more we all share will lead to a common thread and this can be solved for all of us, because you are right this is a PAIN.    The itching is not totaly gone, it has diminished from a constant, raging itch, feeling hot and bubbling (no kidding), to a cooler temp and a mild sensation of an itch.  However, as soon as I get into something that I shouldn't (gluten for sure, but there are also many other triggers (hisamine items - beer, wine, tomatoes, etc)  I will explode into itching, they turn bright red and bubble, usually within minutes but sometimes hours of when I last ate.  Then it slowly disappears.  I also get stomach problems that can last for several days.  It took me a long time to find all the gluten in my diet...gravy, soy sauce, etc.  Not to mention face and hair products and the worst was the "wheat" cat litter, which of course is all over my house.  I can't kneel on my carpeting without a problem.

    By the way, I've just started taking something called HistDAO (20k HDU diamine oxide) if you don't object to the ingredents it does seem to help the itching.  My current holistic guy suggested to try it and I've only been on it short while but I think it's helping a little.  Good Luck!

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  • Posted

    Robin,

    I don't have an answer to your question, but I'm currently experiencing a major itching episode with my GA.  My itching tends to come and go.  It seems to me my spots grow larger in size or new spot appear during my itching episodes.  Just curious if anyone else out there has experienced this.....or maybe it's just my imagination?  My current itching phase has been going on for about 2 weeks now.  I usually scratch so often and so hard, I bruise.  I am desperate for some relief, not only with the itching but for the condition itself.  It's so unsightly. Looks like huge ringworms!  I was first diagnosed about 7 years ago and was initially told it would last anywhere from 2 months to 2 years.....and I have more spots today that ever.  I am interested in a holistic approach and I'm curious if Deb had any results with hers and if so, what did she take and for how long?  Also, I'm interested in the gluten free diet results?  Any helpful information is greatly appreciated.

     

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    • Posted

      I know this is an old thread, but you seem to have the same symptoms as me. Mine itch so bad, but it's only if I'm developing new ones or an existing one is growing. I've had this almost my whole life, but was just diagnosed because I had a huge flair up in the last year, affecting my legs and arms. They used to go away, but now I seem to be stuck with them. I am so self conscious about them... I used to wear whatever I wanted. Now I cover up everything. I'm so sorry to everyone else who has this... but I'm honestly a bit comforted that I'm not alone.

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    • Posted

      I am experiencing the exact same episodes and symptoms. I've tried everything. Nothing seems to affect the "cycle." It has a mind of its own. I use ice packs at night to relieve the burning/itching when it is unbearable. I cannot seem to find any correlation between the food I'm eating and flare ups. I've been tested for celiac (blood work and skin biopsy for DH). The GA has short "dormant" periods where my skin sort of starts to heal and scar over (the scabs from the itching). I'm having the experience of being self conscious. My arms and neck and shoulders look horrible. I've been using coconut oil to sooth the scars, but it doesn't actually do anything to prevent the progress when I'm having a flare up.

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    • Posted

      I am so glad to find this forum. I too have the worst case of gga!!! It is from my feet to my neck, but only itchy behind my knees. I have tried tea tree oil, steroids and am starting an antibiotic to see if that helps. Nothing else has yet. I am interested in the gluten free possibility for a cure. It is SO unsightly and with summer coming I can hardly stand it!!!
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  • Posted

    Hi Robin,

    Still taking the DAO histamine blocker and trying to stay gluten and dairy free, as well as follow a low histamine diet.  Some relief if I follow my diet very, very closely with no cheating.  This past week has been the worst with sick kids and heavy work load, so it's been much harder to follow my cook everthing fresh and eat next to nothing diet so I've got a flare up.  No doubt in my mind it's something or a bunch of something that I'm eating, also higher stress and maybe monthly hormones cause it to be worse.  I'm not sure I'm making any headway but I'm continuing to try because at least the worst of these monster circles are faded.  Good luck and keep posting as you find changes/results.  Best...Deb

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    • Posted

      Thank you for your response Deb.  I've never had a doctor suggest I try a gluten free diet but I am intrigued because you say your circles are fading due to it.  I'm not sure I could follow it close enough for it to actually work though :-/  My circles (I call them my leapard spots) look like they fading at times but I think it only appears that way if I have just the right amount of sun tan for them to blend in a little.  I believe they are definitely connected to hormonal changes.  The reason I think so is because I have read posts by a few women who said they had moderate to severe GA that completely disappeared when they became pregnant....then returned again with a vengence after the baby was born.  I talked to my GYN about this a couple years ago and suggested he prescribe me some estrogen or progesterone cream to apply to the spots to see if it worked.  While he seemed interested in the idea of GA being connected to hormone changes because of what I read (I am 51 and was toward the end of menopause at the time) he didn't want to prescribe the estrogen cream because, in his words "you have so many spots I think it would be an estrogen overdose to have you put the cream on them all."  How long were you on the gluten free diet before you noticed an improvement in your circles?  I assume we would have to continue a gluten free lifestyle for the rest of our lives in order to keep the condition at bay?  That sounds nearly impossible....at least for me.  Thanks again.  I would be very interested in hearing of your continued progress/success.  

       

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  • Posted

    I have the itchy problem GA.  The only thing that helps me is to rub on some Silk Argan Oil hair and skin treatment.   It usually goes away after a couple of days.  I told my doctor and she didn't say anything.  It is interesting about the glut end free. I have just been told to go on the diet for other reasons.   I hope that works.  I don't know much about gluten free, I will look it up.  She also says it is stress.  Mine started after menopause. And I have had it for twelve years flares up on and off.   Itching then the circular rash.  I am also trying honey and one desserts spoon of vinegar in water.  I hope that helps, it hasn't so far but I haven't been taking it every day.  I will keep looking and hope we may all came across some cure or perhaps something that helps.  I will still keep applying my Silk skin and hair treatment because that is what has helped a lot.  Thank you and God bless all of us with a cure.
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