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Dr. C.
Dr. C., M.D.
Category: Dermatology
Satisfied Customers: 3064
Experience:  30 years medical experience
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Reoccurring rash with a biopsy showing deep tissue uticaria. Help!

Customer Question

I have been having a reoccurring rash since Nov 2013. I have had multiple lab draws testing for autoimmune disease, all negative. A punch biopsy that showed deep tissue uticaria.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dermatology
Expert:  Dr. C. replied 1 year ago.

Where is the rash located? Does it bother you in any way? Itching? Burning? Can you attach an image? Has anything been tried on it? etc?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Begin- Nov 2013
continued through XMAS- then seen by Derm, put on steroids for 2 weeks. went away within 3 weeks. flare up again in FEb 2014- labs completed all normal and negative. punch biopsy completed-urticaria- placed on steroids again. resolved shortly after. Flare up again August 2014- steroids gone. Nov 2014- flare up- discontinued only medication- Birth control- steroids rash resolved. August 2015 flare up currently.
The rash always starts on the hips, usually very itchy in morning and night and after shower.
Expert:  Dr. C. replied 1 year ago.
It seems like an allergic reaction or nerve reaction of some kind. What are the doctors saying? Most likely that they don't know the cause? Some people have urticaria from stress. In that case, careful attention to exercise and stress reduction would be most helpful.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The very first flare up was right hip- then left- then I traveled to Florida and the rash extended to back of legs, waist, back of arms, top of shoulders- very uncomfortable. My question right now is, should I be concerned with a different cause. With this current flare up- I went to MD and she didn't want to place me on steroids, said it wasn't bad enough? And now its October. Zyrtec isn't working, everything I use is hypoallergenic, and now my left hip is tight, uncomfortable, sore, I wouldn't say painful, but a nagging dull discomfort.
I am in a very stressful time in my life right now.... but the rash began at a time of very low stress. The derm I was seeing doesn't believe its a topical reaction, she believes it is an internal cause.
Expert:  Dr. C. replied 1 year ago.

I would say that for now a different cause isn't of concern. This is still in the ballpark of stress reaction. Even if it began at a time of lower stress, you may have unconsciously been aware that the stress was about to ramp up.

I would advise careful attention to exercise, a minimal of 30-60 minutes of brisk walking daily. And avoiding alcohol and drugs. Trying to eat right and spending time in contact with supportive people.

It may be something dietary as well. Sometimes a dietary cause can come out at times of weakness. So perhaps a food diary to see if there are certain foods that are associated with worse symptoms at day.

If regular medical care isn't helping, alternative providers may be helpful.

Any other questions?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No. These are all things I currently do. I exercise 5 days a week, eat well, my husband is extremely supportive and we are very happy. I have tried gluten free, no processed foods. Alternative providers? as in what?
Expert:  Dr. C. replied 1 year ago.

Sometimes Western medicine doesn't have good enough answers. For some people seeing a Chinese medicine specialist or a naturopath can be more helpful. Sometimes allopathic (Western) doctors try their best, run tests and can't come up with answers. In that case it can be helpful to switch to a different "paradigm". I hope that's not confusing. Mostly Western (regular) medicine doesn't have all the answers sometimes and using a system that thinks differently about the problems can help.