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  1. #1

    **** Female

    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Norfolk
    Posts
    3

    Unhappy Newbie with pompholyx

    Hi everyone,

    I've been searching for some help and advice online and came across this forum, so this is me saying 'hi'

    I have a few skin complaints, but what's driven me to seek support is this dreadful itchy pompholyx i'm afflicted with.

    I first developed a few tiny bumps/blisters on my fingers and feet about 2 years ago, but they didn't actually itch that much and, as silly as it sounds, I was embarrassed about it because it just looked so horrible - I just put plasters around my fingers until they healed, which took weeks for some of them. Until recently, i've been blister free so actually forgot all about it. About 2 weeks ago I was checking my feet for cuts and lesions (I have spina bifida so can't feel much of my feet) when I spotted the familiar crop of blisters. As they didn't itch or hurt me at all, I didn't bother doing anything about and thought i'd wait to see what my podiatrist thought.

    However, just a few days later I suddenly developed this unbearable itch in my palms and had no idea why. Soon after that a few bumps and fluid filled blisters appeared on both palms and a couple of fingers, which burst due to my itching them ferociously. I showed them to a pharmacist, who gave me Eurax - this didn't help at all, and actually caused stinging in the open sores. Over the past few days it's got worse and worse - almost my whole right palm and fingers is covered with bumps, blisters, crusty sores and scaly/flaky skin (left is too but not so bad). I searched on Google for some photos and as soon as I saw a pic of pompholyx, I knew that's what it was.

    So, yesterday I saw my GP, half expecting her to not know what I was talking about, but straight away she confirmed pompholyx! She has prescribed me Betamethasone steroid cream to apply 2-3 times a day and said they don't really know why it happens - could be a mixture of things at play.

    I know i've only been using it for 24 hours, but so far all that's happened is more blisters, itching, pain and cracked skin What makes it worse is that I rely on my hands to push myself in my wheelchair and for transfers, and it's so damn painful! I'm struggling to even hold a pen! Luckily typing doesn't require me to close my hands - if it did I wouldn't be posting right now! I also need to wash my hands frequently due to continence problems, and that is just agony.

    Anyway, I just wanted to ask does anyone else on here have it and how do you manage it? How long does it take for the steroid cream to work, and what do I do if it doesn't help? Is there anything else I can do to stop the itching in the meantime? I'm just desperate for some relief and want my hands back to normal!

    Thanks and sorry for the long post!

  2. #2
    vencasand's Avatar
    **Brenda** Female

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    CARROLL CO. MD
    Posts
    1,755

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    when you apply the betamethasone do you rub it into your blisters? allow it to soak into your skin. because you have to wash your hands a lot it might take the betamethasone more time to work. usually the steroid creams start working right away but when you have a bad attack it might take a few days to show any improvement. if this cream doesn't work there are others you can try. don't get discouraged. does it hurt your hands if you use vinyl gloves? maybe you could use gloves to clean yourself. that way you wouldn't be subjecting your hands constantly to soap and water. i know about the itching. i have psoriasis all over. ask your doctor if you can take an antihistimine. that might help the itching. i take the generic of allegra but it only helps a little. if i take diphenhydramine i will fall asleep and i can't do that at work. if you see no relief in 5 days from the betamethasone cream, call your doctor to try another one. i am sending my blessings, and hope you feel better soon.

  3. #3

    **** Female

    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Norfolk
    Posts
    3

    Default

    Thanks for your reply vencasand

    Unfortunately things have gone downhill - infection has set in, so my hands are just a mass of pus-filled blisters I called my doctor and she advised me to stop the steroid cream, because it can make infections worse. She then prescribed Fusidin antibiotic cream to use instead. After a couple of days there was still no improvement, and to make matters worse a long-standing ulcer on my foot got infected and has actually caused cellulitis, so i'm now on oral clarithromycin and back to the steroid cream. I'm feeling really quite ill and really down - 2 weeks with this horrible thing with my hands is really getting to me. Hopefully the antibiotics will help clear both things up, or it might be a hospital job.

    On a separate note, I bought some potassium permanganate after reading that it can help pompholyx, but now i've got it i'm rather afraid of using it - the health and safety information leaflet has scared the bejeesus out of me! Ingestion or inhalation of this stuff is actually fatal It states that it causes irritation to skin, even when heavily diluted (when not diluted enough is causes severe chemical burns!) so how can that be good for already irritated skin? Confused!

  4. #4
    vencasand's Avatar
    **Brenda** Female

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    CARROLL CO. MD
    Posts
    1,755

    Default

    it can be diluted but i don't know to what strength to be an oxidant it can be used as a disinfectant. but like i said you would have to have a formula to make this safely. i wouldn't use it unless i contacted the company i bought it from and asked for specific directions. i am not that good at chemistry!!. i wish i had an answer for you and i wish i could make all your problems go away. just don't give up and take it a day at a time. you are a very strong lady. my blessings and prayers go with this reply. let us know how you are doing.

  5. #5

    **** Female

    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Norfolk
    Posts
    3

    Default

    I'm useless at chemistry so I won't touch it - I have a friend who's a science teacher, maybe I can donate it to her to use in classroom experiments!

    The worst infected blisters have responded to the antibiotics, so that's good, but i'm still developing new itchy blisters despite the steroid cream - it's just relentless. A nurse friend has suggested I ask about oral steroids, but am a bit wary of those - I already take a ton of other pills!

    I'm just being attacked at all angles at the moment - my hands with the blisters, my foot with the ulcer and cellulitis, my back (waiting for major spinal surgery) and now even my tooth is crumbling causing a lot of pain! I was in hospital this time last year so was hoping i'd have a better christmas this year. Ho hum!

    Thanks for all your help and advice

  6. #6
    pepsimax's Avatar
    **Nikki** Female

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    London
    Posts
    561

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    I am really sorry to read about what you are going through. I truly hope things clear up for you soon.
    I have found that my regular pharmacist knows more about drugs/creams themselves than my GP does. Mine seems to know more about what goes with what without looking it up, so could be worth with chatting to him/her. I wouldn't use a commercial chemist like Boots but an independent one which has a regular Pharmacist.
    If things don't clear up or noticeably get better then I would keep in touch with your GP so she/he knows how things are and maybe push to see a specialist.

  7. #7

    **clara kim** Female

    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Los Angeles, California
    Posts
    197

    Default

    I have pompholyx and my doctor recommended me triamcinolone acetonide cream usp 0.1%, hope it helps!


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