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Skin Care and Diseases

Itchy skin syndrome

06/04/2007

Question:

I have had a problem with itchiness starting in my palms and they soles of my feet, usually in the arch, then spreading everywhere on my body from my head to my toes, even in my ears. It is constant and does not go away. I could scratch everywhere 24 hours a day if I had too!

I have been tested by the dermatologist, neurologist, and internist. I haven`t been able to pinpoint a cause. I have had kidney and liver testing done & thyroid. I`ve changed detergents, soaps, etc. I don`t get hives or rashes. I am taking an Allegra every day for the past 3 years and it works, but if I forget to take a pill, 24 hours to the minute (give or take!) I start itching again. Allegra does control the problem, but I`d love to not take a pill everyday if I didn`t have to.

Have you heard of this before? Any tests that you would recommend? Thankyou

Answer:

Hard to give a good comment as it sounds like you have been extensively worked up. Did the dermatologist do a skin biopsy? What did that show and if it was non-specific, was it repeated on a time that you were not on medication (no topical steroids, no oral medications) so that the real histologic picture would show up? Sometimes it takes a while for a dermatosis to be unraveled.

I think you should go back to your dermatologist or seek another dermatologist's opinion.

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Response by:

Elma D Baron, MD Elma D Baron, MD
Associate Professor of Dermatology
Director, Skin Study Center
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University