I have gotten a number of letters that describe a mystifying skin condition where one feels that there are bugs crawling underneath the surface of one's skin, and it is driving the sufferers crazy.
There is a disease called Morgellons Disease where one of the symptoms is exactly that, the sensation of bugs crawling all over underneath the skin.
Other symptoms of this strange disease can include granules and/or threads coming out from the skin. No one knows exactly what causes this disease, but it has been around for hundreds of years.
Currently the CDC is looking into this disease and this posted site allows people who suffer from these symptoms to sign up for updates on it.
I don't know if this will give you the answers you're looking for, but it is a very valuable resource for those of you out there who are suffering from a condition that is little known, and has little to no known treatment.
With the current economic conditions, I've heard from a number of you, and some of you have had some fairly serious concerns, and yet you do not seek medical attention due to lack of insurance.
While insurance is a very helpful benefit, it should never, ever keep you from seeking appropriate medical care when you are truly suffering. Call your doctor and ask what a brief office visit would cost for an established patient. You may be pleasantly surprised.
As one reader pointed out, going to urgent care cost her $100, but it addressed her problem and she was on the road to recovery very quickly.
Rather than waiting things out, suffering, possibly even putting your future health at risk, consider paying for one visit out of pocket so that you can have a medical evaluation.
This will do two things:
It will put your mind at ease.
It will put on the road to health much more quickly.
There are also low-cost medical clinics that are popping up to help manage the vast number of people who are currently without medical insurance. By looking in some unexpected places, you may be able to take care of your medical needs without insurance and without breaking the bank.
Of all the skin conditions I see, the most frustrating for both me and my patients has to be eczema.
The most common form of eczema is atopic eczema, which is believed to be similar to an allergy, and is essentially a hypersensitivity of the skin. This leads to long-term skin inflammation. Some people outgrow it as they get older. It does tend to run in families.
Most people with eczema also have trouble with hay fever, allergies, or asthma. Because of this, anything that would irritate an allergy will aggravate your skin. Here are a few things that make eczema worse:
Having allergies to animal dander, dust mites, pollen, or mold
Being sick with a viral infection
Touching rough materials like cardboard boxes or wood
Having excessively dry skin
Being exposed to irritants in the environment
Being too hot or too cold
Dyes and perfumes in soap, cream, and lotion
In order to be diagnosed with eczema, your doctor will do a physical exam of your skin and take a detailed personal and family history. The skin lesions will be examined, and sometimes a punch biopsy is done so that it can be examined under the microscope.
Eczema almost always causes itching, which can sometimes begin even before any skin lesions or rashes appear. Eczema will usually present as oozing blisters that crust over as they heal. Areas of the skin that are affected are sometimes lighter or darker than the surrounding skin. There is usually redness/inflammation around the blisters. And yes, they itch!
People who have been affected with eczema for a long time develop leather-like skin in those areas; a result of the irritation and the scratching.
Obviously, you want to avoid scratching if you possibly can. Use cold compresses to help alleviate the itching. Take antihistamines to help with the most severe itching.
Try to find a moisturizer that you can tolerate because your skin needs to be lubricated, as dry skin makes eczema even worse. The moisturizer should not have any alcohol, fragrance or dye in it. You will have to experiment to find what works for you.
Bedbugs are making a comeback in the U.S. They had all but disappeared through the 1970's and 1990's. Recently they have been making headlines coast to coast. This is frustrating, especially for the people getting bit.
What I'd like to point out is that while bedbugs are an irritant, they are not dangerous and they do not transmit disease through their bites. There are ways to deal with a bedbug infestation in your home, but please make sure that whatever method you employ, you don't go overboard and try to kill them with pesticides that are designed only for outdoor use.
These types of pesticides are dangerous to humans, especially to younger children. Please don't put your children in danger as you try to eradicate a minor irritant. Make sure any extermination company you hire is authentic and has a history of successfully dealing with bedbugs. As this problem becomes more widespread, there are a number of businesses that pop up claiming to be experts at getting rid of bedbugs, but all they manage to do is to make your family ill.
A good extermination company will be costly, but they will work with you until the problem is solved and most importantly, they will make sure you family suffers no ill effects from the chemicals they use.
Itching may be apart of the normal healing process ,However if it is severe consider adding Benadryl to your routine.You may need to visit your physician for suggestions for a stronger anti-inflammatory cream (if your itching persists)such as betamethasone (diprolene). Best regards Dr EvansView Thread
Chronic itcing can be a devastating problem.Your first step is to consult with your physician to exclude any underlying medical conditions such as thyroid ,hormonal or circulatory diseases.Next step is to determine if you have any underlying skin diseases such as excema or ,psoriasis and finally you should rule-out any infectious causes , insect bites ,fungal or worm infestations. Hopefully this is a start Best Dr EvansView Thread
Hi I reviewed the product insert on Defferin cream . According to their website ,some individuals may be susceptible to a hypersensitive reaction. It appears that you have already taken the right steps by scheduling an appointment with your Dermatologist. Your Physican may prescribe something stronger than over the counter hydrocortisone to help clear things up..View Thread
Hi Thank you for your your Kind Words. .There are several qualified doctors within the New york...
Hi Thank you for your your Kind Words. .There are several qualified doctors within the New york City area.Simply start with an online search for dermatologists in your area. once you select a physician , review their website to determine if they have treated patients with your skin condition and skin type.Next ,call their office and ask specific questions regarding your skin condition before scheduling an appointment. Finally ,we have (as well as other physicians) patients throughout the united states and the world that we offer a virtual consultation though phone, skype or ichat .These interactions may help steer you in the right direction. Best Dr EvansView Thread
As summer approaches ,I just want to remind everyone the importance of the use of Sunscreen .Over one million people are diagnosed with skin cancer annually. Sun damage is also the number one cause for premature aging.View Thread