The biopsy really can only be taken during the rash b/c the biopsy HAS to be taken from CLEAR skin ADJACENT TO an active lesion. Read some of the posts on here in the dh forum. It will give you links to the proper way to take a dh biopsy AND PERHAPS MORE IMPORTANTLY how many derms screw it up even though they act like they know what they're doing! YOU need to be your own advocate & look over their shoulder & make sure they get it right or else you'll be frustrated & wondering perhaps forever. You don't want that! You have to be firm & print out how to take a dh biopsy the proper way & TAKE IT WITH YOU & SHOW IT TO THEM. Once in a while you come across a derm who knows what they're doing but the odds are against you okay? So take care of yourself by making sure it's done correctly the first time around.
AND I CAN'T STRESS THE FOLLOWING ENOUGH!
DO NOT stop eating gluten until the biopsy results are back. DO NOT eat gluten light until the biopsy results are back. DO NOT think you can go gluten-free & then eat some crackers a couple days before hand --- it will not work. And all of this applies until ALL testing is complete & results are in & you KNOW that everyone did everything right if you are going to have a celiac blood panel &/or endoscopy. And I will repeat what I've told a 1,000 times ---- celiacs with dh test neg. on blood & endoscopy more often than not. The antibodies are in our skin & that's what causes the high rate of false negatives on those tests.
AND topical steroid use or oral steroid use within roughly 2 months prior to dh biopsy will yield a false neg. biopsy. And I don't care WHAT the doctor says contrary to that.
Good luck & we sincerely hope you do not have celiac disease & especially dh!
Yes, you're right. And you had been gluten-free for 2 years so that didn't help your blood panel. IMHO you would need a super long gluten challenge to overcome the 2 years PLUS the (if you have dh) dh factor making it negative. And still you could turn up neg. on the blood. The problem is, if you have dh then you're probably going to have to wait & continue with eating gluten until the rash goes bonkers. And the rash can go bonkers all at once. Then you're in BIG trouble. My rash were here & there & here & there for years & then one day it went ever loving NUTS. Now remember that dh deposits the antibodies under the skin. Once they've been deposited you have to suffer for could be 2 years or even longer. You might be able to take Dapsone but that's not guaranteed --- plenty have not been able to tolerate Dapsone so you can't count on Dapsone being your answer.
All this is sort of a long way of saying ----- if gluten is hurting you then do you really need an "official dx"? You don't need anyone's permission to go gluten-free. You know that -- you went gluten-free before for 2 years. So unless there is some other valid reason that you must have that official dx then why not just save yourself some grief & go gluten-free now & never look back?
I can tell you that full blown dh is a BAAAAD MUTHA & I would tell anyone that if they can avoid it getting to that full blown point then do so without hesitation! Take a look in the dh photo bank at my photos & some of the others who have it really bad. You don't EVEN want to go there. If I could save just one person from experiencing the hell I've been through then I would dance with joy! There's a reason dh is called the suicidal itch & I know why.
There is a member GfreeMo who developed DH after going back on gluten for 2 years. She has been having a hard time with it. It's not a fun condition. People with DH sometimes avoid iodine when they are flaring. And flares can last a while. Listen to Squirmy, she knows what she is talking about.
Proverbs 25:16 "Hast thou found honey? eat so much as is sufficient for thee, lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it." Job 30:27 My bowels boiled, and rested not: the days of affliction prevented me. Thyroid cyst and nodules, Lactose / casein intolerant. Diet positive, gene test pos, symptoms confirmed by Dr-head. My current bad list is: gluten, dairy, sulfites, coffee (the devil's brew), tea, Bug's Bunnies carrots, garbanzo beans of pain, soy- no joy, terrible turnips, tomatoes, peppers, potatoes, and hard work. have a good day! :-) Paul
Squirmingitch is totally on the money here. If I were you, I'd give up the gluten this minute and never look back. Forget about a diagnosis and just run from the gluten. RUN, my friend! My sister just told me that she's starting to get a rash on her behind and with our family history of celiac and DH I was kind of surprised she hadn't already quit eating gluten. I mean, she's SEEN my skin and that should be enough to scare most people off gluten.
It's taken 26 months gluten-free so far to start seeing and believing that my skin is finally healing. Lots of flares still, but iodine is a big factor in that..
My Dad has a mysterious rash - had it for decades.
You think he's stopped gluten since I figured out where my rash came from?
Ut uh. He isn't in enough pain and may never be.
Apparently there is nothing that cannot happen today. ~ Mark Twain
Probable Endometriosis, in remission from childbirth since 2002. Hashimoto's DX 2005. Gluten-Free since 6/2011. DH (and therefore Celiac) dx from ND. Responsive to iodine withdrawal for DH (see quote, above). Genetic tests reveal half DQ2, half DQ8 - I'm a weird bird!