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Allergies

Allergy to wheat - dermatitis herpetiformis

01/09/2008

Question:

I have an allergy to wheat which manifests itself via blisters on my head, back, fingers, knees...it is not internal like celiac. I am very careful about what I eat and never knowingly eat any products containing wheat. I have been virtually "wheat free" for 5 months and yet still continue to break out with these blisters. The dermatologist has not idea how to help me. Can you tell me how long it takes for wheat to exit the system? Other than dapsone, is there another drug that I can take?

Answer:

You may have dermatitis herpetiformis. Although associated with celiac disease, it may occur as an isolated condition. You should be on a gluten-free, not just wheat-free diet for at least several months. If you do not improve, dapsone would be a good drug choice.

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Response by:

I Leonard Bernstein, MD I Leonard Bernstein, MD
Clinical Professor Emeritus
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati