Pompholyx The Joy of Popping Blisters!

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My name is Alison, i'm 46 years and have had acute pompholyx all over both hands for 18 months, following a period of severe stress and anxiety. I POP BLISTERS! I disagree with pretty much everything i have been told by various dermatology consultants who have clearly never suffered from this aggravating condition. I have never had an infection from the popped the blisters despite being told time and time again that i would. When a blister pops - a little itch dies. And i defy anyone who wakes up in the morning with a hand like itching bubble wrap, not to pop a few! Especially when you feel the pop from the outside, AND from the inside - from the depths of your finger. It is this factor that makes me believe that pompholyx is not caused by allergens or anthing attacking the skin barrier. the blisters grow from deep inside - sometimes at the beginning i find the itch is is so far down i can't locate it on the outside skin, until it comes up as a blister. This is stuff trying to get out, not stuff attacking the surface. I've also been told that the stuff inside the blisters is the same as a normal skin blister. I disagree with this too - has anyone actually looked at the 2 fluids under a microscope?? Normal blisters don't itch, the fluid inside them is not sticky, and they do not have the characteristic little brown dot in the centre. They also do not develop into cluster blisters - which are like a little honeycomb of internal blisters. I am desperate for dermatoligists everywhere to stop treating pompholy like ecxzema!! I am desperate for people to start talking openly about living with this condition, and i was desperate to get that off my chest!!

best wishes and happy popping!

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  • Posted

    cheers alison you brightened my day up cheesygrin

    ive also learnt something today, i have Pompholyx , my docs been trying to treat me for pustular psoriasis, mainly on the soles of my feet, shes tried all kinds of creams, finally given up, referred me to a dermatologist, when i get there i can tell him whats wrong now, woo hoo cool

    i didnt know what Pompholyx was so i googled it, read a lot, looked at lots of pics and i had that eureka moment idea its exactly what ive had for decades would you believe (only recently tried sorting it, moved and saw new doctor about something else) i cant wait to be a smart arse and let my doctor know what it is lol .

    im also a secret blister popper, my doc goes balistic lol, but oh the pleasure of instant relief from the itching as soon as a blister has been popped, the itching drives you nuts, doesnt it rolleyes

    we ought to form a movement and come out of the closet and be proud of our blister popping activities i reckon wink

    cheers,

    Ken~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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  • Posted

    It's such a relief to hear I'm not the only person who does this. I had my first ourbreak when I was 10 or 11 yrs old and it has never gone into remission.I've always found it so embarrassing and would always hide my hands. I've tried all kinds of medications and creams and nothing ever worked. The only thing I found that helped at all, and only helps with appearances, is a sugar scrub made with Vitamin E Oil, Morning Primrose Oil, Sunflower Oil and Coconut Oil and then finish with a homemade cream of Shea Butter, Coconut Oil and Sunflower Oil blended into a whipped cream. It really helps with dryness and peeling but not break-outs.

    I've never had a doctor diagnose me with Pompholyx, I kind of stumbled on it, like you guys, researching the internet.

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  • Posted

    Hi, Alison,

    I've had this on my feet for months at a time. It is unbeliveably itchy. It's a type of Eczema which affects the thickened skin on the soles of the feet and the hands. It's so itchy because the blisters can't quite reach the surface and pop by themselves due to the thickened skin. The only way I could relieve the itch was to pop the blisters and rub my feet against a coarse surface - like the doormat! My GP advised using a good quality foot moisturiser, rather than talc or anything else on your feet, it really works, I've not an episode for several years now.  

    Good luck.

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  • Posted

    I've had this since I was a kid. It's gotten worse over the years, particularly on my feet.

    Here's what finally helped: spray-on aerosol deodorant. Get the unscented kind and spray it on your feet, before bed and again in the morning (after bathing). For flare-ups, I apply an anti-fungal spray first, just in case. 

    You can also purchase 'diabetic' socks that are super soft and have silver threads that suppress odor and bacterial growth. These help ensure you don't get secondary infections in the cracks and blisters. (I walked around all day at Disney World in July, and the socks kept my feet from smelling like anything other than clean tennis shoe!)

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  • Posted

    I pop blisters whenever I can, even though some of them are hiding beneath the skin, they will show their little shiney blips eventually.  Popping them stops the little suckers itching, the relief is amazing.. that clear exudate they produce is evil.. wash your hands and everything after coming in contact with it.. that's how mine spread to other parts.. mea culpa!  But I didn't know.
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  • Posted

    Thank you for your detailed description of the condition, I already feel better that I am not the only one suffering with unbelievable itchy blisters .i had the first breakout about 23 years ago during a very stressful time in my life and it's been with me on n off since then. Only real relief I had was from dose of steroid tablets which I don't use any more due to the side effects.i used to have it around my ankle in early years which I could live with but last two years they moved to soles of my feet which gets agrivated by walking and wearing shoes in the summer. Sensation is just like being stung by nettles with urge to scratch as hard as one can. I also feel my doles of feet burning and agitated when it comes in contact man made materials therefore I only wear 100% cotton socks and all leather shoes. My doctors also trying to threat it using various versions of steroid creams without any success, if anything they are worse now as well as damaged skin. I finally asked him to refer me to the specialist to get the bottom of the cause if at all possible. Waiting for the appointment at the moment.

    I will update you all after I see the specialist (dermatologist) hopefully with the good news. Best wishes.

    Muz

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  • Posted

    Have had DE on my feet for 15 years. Misdiagnosed for 5 years with athletes foot... Tried hydrocortisone cream early on with good results. I scratch until I bleed! Last ten years I pop all the blisters with a fine insulin needle. Best and only relief. Pop the darn blisters! I have never had an infection. "F" the doctors.... They have no idea! I have never had it spread.
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  • Posted

    That's the best way I've heard it described ...the itch that starts so deep you're not quite sure where it originates.

    I have this on my feet. It comes on suddenly & uexpectedly. My podiatrist has put it down to a type of eczema or pustular psoriasis associated with neuropathy.

    Bizarre. I have never had an infection from digging them out or causing them to break. There seems to be two types of fluid ..one (similar to that in digital mucosa) is a most putrid smelling (like the smell of rusted iron) liquid that remains on my hands until washed. The other has no odour.

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  • Posted

    Hi everybody, i have had misdiagnosed pompholyx on my hands for over 10 years! Most horrible thing ever! When they are bad i just want to chop my hands off honestly! I have recently come across some information that may help some of you...hopefully. After much research on this theory i feel my pompholyx is a reaction from candida! I know its a crazy thought and doctors will snuff at it. But ive known for years that this is from within. Every time i eat chillis, potatoes, garlic or any night shade type food my hands blister up like crazy. Has anyone noticed it happens while you sleep? Im in the process of trying to treat candida now and god i hope it works! Anyway do some research on candida symptoms. You may be able to cure your pompholyx too? P.S Pop, wash and steroid cream your skin to help it heal faster. Im in the middle of a break out now because i dared to eat some pesto with dinner! (Garlic pain)
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  • Posted

    I can't believe nobody's mentioned this "cure" for the itching: Hold palms or soles under very hot running water. This intensifies the itching to a verging-on-orgasmic level but then when you withdraw your hand from the water, itching subsides immediately. (Until next itching fit.) This is only my third outbreak, in two years. Mysterious disorder, I'm just glad it's not contagious.

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    • Posted

      The burn of hot water to cure itching is incredibly satisfying and as you stated ORGASMIC there is no other chilling sensation that I can describe this, it's almost addictive. it really does kill the itch, BUT it also Kills your skin. My skin the next day is so dry that it's almost worst then when it started.  When all else fails I use this method but I pay for it days later.  What does give me 24-hour instant relief is an allergy pill with loratadine.

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  • Posted

    It's funny, but I have had the exact same experience and this is the only place I've read anyone suggesting simply popping the blisters as a cure.  Not only does it prevent the blisters from itching, but it also seems to control the spread of the blisters.  When they go unnoticed for a while I tend to get a much larger section of my hand covered in these 'vesicles', which as you mention are very distinct from 'normal blisters', both in size, positioning, and content.  As soon as I start popping them the inflammation usually stops spreading, and they almost never get infected.  I make sure to keep the skin of the area in question clean and dry, and since the bubbles refill with fluid I try to drain them until all of the fluid is gone and they cease refilling.  Hot water, and heat in general, seems to cause the inflammation to spread as well, so I try to keep the area cool as well.  This has helped me keep my pompholyx under control and at very small levels.  I agree that it seems like the fluid is either something 'wanting to get out' or at least a biological response to stress or allergens which produces a fluid which 'wants to get out', and failure to drain it seems to cause it to spread (for me at least). 

    I wanted to comment that over the twenty years I've been managing my pompholyx in this manner, just last year I actually did get a horrible infection from popping the blisters.  Usually i use a sterilized thumb tack, but I was feeling lazy and for a day or two I used one without sterilizing it.  The resulting infection was god awful and lasted almost two months, so if you are going to do this make sure to wash the area and dry it, and please use sterilized instruments only.  I other words if you are using your nails to pop the blisters (which I do not recommend) you should make sure they are clean!  Also, this method may not be such a great idea if your pompholyx is particularly acute or widespread.  Mine seem to spread along my fingers her and there and only twice was on my feet, but some of the google images I pulled up were so much worse than what I have experienced I'm not sure I'd recommend the same approach.

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  • Posted

    Hi I am 12 almost 13 and I have had pompholyx since I was about 7 or 8 and we have spent thousands of dollars over the years in dumb doctor appointments I live in mountain city TN and I was born I Charlotte NC I had to go there about a mount ago they dignosed me with pompholyx when I got home I did research it said that it was treatable not curable but it may go into remission but the treatment I have to do is ultraviolet light and we will have to travel 3 to 4 hours 3 times a week and I am stressed a lot and I go through a box ok 60 equate(Walmart) brand band aids every week I am so sad they are throbbing so bad and we are so stressed with this plz help😭😩🙁
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  • Posted

    Thank you so much for this! I've only just discovered this after weeks (and counting) of suffering with the condition. I had the little blisters on my feet for a while and had no answers from professionals, then only today did some research because they horrifyingly appeared on my hands too!! I also suffer with eczema around my eyes (strangely) and elbows, I wondered if they would be linked? Also why I've only just had them come up?! I have to agree that popping them are just too much of a satisfaction to resist! I personally like to push my nail across one so they can't take the pressure and burst with relief (there I said it!) and that's the only way I can feel better about these pesky little blisters! Thanks for sharing your stories though, I now know what it is finally. smile

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