Anyone Have Skin Problems?
Posted 02 April 2004 - 10:22 PM
My finger tips literally split open and bleed, which is as you can imagine very painful. It might be called a skin fusion? I have never been able to get a diagnosis or cure for the problem. Sometimes the wounds can take weeks to heal. (I am not diabetic) So far Band-Aid brand Liquid bandages are my best chance at getting the wounds to heal. At any time I can have 10 or so skin splits on my hands.
I have gotten used to this problem since I have had it all of my life. (The skin splits did not last as long when I was an undiagnosed Celiac. My problem is it has gotten worse since going gluten-free. Now the wounds are taking so long to heal that the fingers keep getting re-injured and then the bleeding starts all over again. I have a hard time cooking for my family and friends since everytime I turn around I am getting blood on the food or utensils which grosses me out and I am sure makes everyone else nervous. (blood . . . diseases . . . yikes!)
1. Doctors: Do you have any suggestions about why my fingers keep splitting open and what can I do to make it stop?
2. Does anyone else have this problem? If so how do you deal with it?
3. I don't know if just touching Gluten is my problem. (I do try to wear gloves) I am very careful not to touch gluten unless I have no other option. If I do find that touching gluten is causing my fingers to split and bleed, does it mean that I am having a gluten reaction/posioning in my intestines???
Background: Biopsy diagnosed Celiac in 10/2003. Completely gluten-free ever since. Gained some weight back and other problems have gone away, my doctor is happy with my health. No other health problems. Take daily vitamins (gluten-free). Have checked all foods and misc items and I know I am not consuming gluten. Occassionally I need to touch bread to make a sandwhich for my toddler, but that's it.
Any advice or commentary would be greatly appreciated.
Posted 02 April 2004 - 10:41 PM
My finger tips split open and bleed, which is very painful. Sometimes the would can take several weeks to heal. I have had this problem all of my life, but after going gluten-free it has gotten worse. Normally, the skin would burst open and bleed and then start healing again and the whole thing would be gone with in a week. After going gluten-free it seems that the wounds can take several weeks to heal and it is not uncomon to have 10 wounds on my hands at any given time.
My hands get dry and no amount of lotion will resolve the problem. Please don't tell me about a cream to use as I have tried them all. I actually coat my hands in olive oil for best results. It works really well, but the dryness stays while the skin splits are present.
I thought DH was a rash, so I am assuming this is not DH.
I am healthy aside from the celiac disease. I take daily vitamins. I do not have diabetes. I am gluten-free (6 months plus) and have checked all of the products I use to cook, clean, bath, eat, etc. I have no idea what this problem is, but my hands are hurting so badly I was hoping that someone on the site will have a suggestion.
Posted 03 April 2004 - 11:14 AM
How is your intake of essential fatty acids? Both omega-3s and omega-6s are important for skin health. Salmon, fish oil, cod liver oil, flax oil, and freshly ground flaxseed are good sources of omega-3s, while black currant seed oil is rich in omega-6s.
If you decide to supplement with cod liver oil, keep in mind that it is also quite rich in actual vitamin A (NOT beta-carotene), which it IS possible to overdose on. (I don't know how relevant this concern might be, however, since I believe many celiacs are deficient in vitamin A.) You might not want to combine cod liver oil with a daily multi-vitamin. On the plus side, it is also rich in vitamin D, which helps prevent osteoporosis.
I hope this helps! Split fingers are the worst!
P.S. Have you had your thyroid function tested? It just occurred to me that slow healing might be caused or worsened by an underactive thyroid. Just a thought!
gluten-free since November 1, 2003
Posted 04 April 2004 - 07:01 PM
I had my thyroid tested years ago when I first started getting seriously ill. I don't remember exactly what was tested, but the results were normal. I don't have insurance right now, so I am trying to avoid going to the doctor for the time being.
I actually have no idea how to figure out if I am eating any "essential fatty acids. My diet is basically Some form of meat, rice or potato, veggies, fruit, sweets, and pancakes and breads. It's really not a very interesting or varied diet, but it works for me. I use different marinades and seasonings to add some flavor change.
So what foods, other than seafood, would contain omega-3s or omega-6s?
Posted 05 April 2004 - 08:32 AM
Posted 05 April 2004 - 02:19 PM
Americans generally get enough omega-6s in their diets, but omega-3s are found almost exclusively in fish and flaxseeds. Maybe you could take a supplement; I know there are several brands available, and it might not be a bad idea anyway since we celiacs often have trouble absorbing fats and probably need to take in larger amounts of them.
I found Johnson & Johnson's 24-hour soothing body lotion more effective than others at keeping my skin moist for hours at a time, which really helped my body get ahead of the damage and heal it in a relatively short time. I hope you find a lotion that works for you!
As far as my thyroid goes, I just had a TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) test done as part of baseline bloodwork for a new doctor. According to the lab that performed the test, "normal" is from 0.34 to 4.82, and HIGHER numbers indicate LESS thyroid activity. My value was 1.96, which looks great--except that I read online that WOMEN tend to feel best at values between 1.0 and 2.0 and start to feel hyopthyroid at values above 2.0! That explains why I only recently started to feel better (on thyroid supplementation) and why I am feeling worse again now that I have run out of the supplement! I'm sure my TSH value has crept up over 2.0 since that test was run.
It's so hard to be without health insurance! I was without insurance for nearly a year, and I decided to view it as an opportunity to find a naturopath that I felt comfortable with (since my insurance wouldn't cover naturopathy anyway, I didn't feel like I was wasting my coverage!). I managed to find a wonderful N.D. who charges only $40 per visit ($60 for the initial visit). I definitely plan to continue seeing him, especially since I can't expect any thyroid assistance from a conventional doctor based on my "normal" test results.
I hope you find an effective treatment for your bleeding hands and that you are not without insurance for very long!
gluten-free since November 1, 2003
Posted 06 April 2004 - 02:05 AM
Husband misdiagnosed for 27 yrs -
The misdiagnosis was: IBS or colitis
Mis-diagnosed from 1977 to 2003 by various gastros including one of the largest,
most prestigious medical groups in northern NJ which constantly advertises themselves as
being the "best." This GI told him it was "all in his head."
Serious Depressive state ensued
Finally Diagnosed with celiac disease in 2003
Other food sensitivities: almost all fruits, vegetables, spices, eggs, nuts, yeast, fried foods, roughage, soy.
Needs to gain back at least 25 lbs. of the 40 lbs pounds he lost - lost a great amout of body fat and muscle
Developed neuropathy in 2005
Now has lymphadema 2006It is my opinion that his subsequent disorders could have been avoided had he been diagnosed sooner by any of the dozen or so doctors he saw between 1977 to 2003
Posted 07 April 2004 - 08:05 PM
I may have to find a naturapath or homepathic type doctors. I have not had a good primary doctor in a long time and I can only uess that having celiacs will make it even harder to find a good primary care doctor. Any thoughts on the types of questions to ask and what to look for to find a good alternative style doctor?
I'll look into the carmol cream and some supplements too.
Posted 08 April 2004 - 01:49 PM
Posted 08 April 2004 - 04:35 PM
I was thinking that the Skin splits amy be coming from Gluten contact not ingestion. My hands seem to break open after touching something with Gluten even if I wash my hands right away with soap and water. Washing my hands always worked for my cat allergy. I was hoping it would work with the gluten.
Since you are one of the few people that I know of who gets these skin splits and think they are somehow related to gluten, I have another question. When you have a gluten accident, you get the skin splits. Does that mean that your intestines are damaged while you have the skin splits? My hands have been split open for so long that I am wondering if this is hurting more than just my hands right now?
Thanks for your help. Ann
Posted 08 April 2004 - 05:10 PM
Posted 09 April 2004 - 07:24 AM
Posted 09 April 2004 - 07:56 AM
What do you do for work? Do you use your hands a lot at work?
Posted 11 April 2004 - 02:31 PM
I have had dry skin problems for years, tried evey lotion there was. I get cracked bleeding hands for most of the year. It only subsides deep in the summer. A friend sells avon and told me to try something and it worked!! It's called moisture theorpy. I put it on several times a day and heavy at night. I still have a little dry skin but no more crackes. Check with an avon rep to be sure the ingredients are ok for you.
Posted 12 April 2004 - 02:32 PM
I am beginning to think that the skin splits must be related to intestonal damage. I have had open skin splits for at least a month now and cannot get them to go away. Prior to being gluten-free I used to have TERRIBLE PMS. I have tried every form of medication and nothing cuts the PMS to a tollerable level. After going gluten-free, I have not had any PMS- except for this month. And this month is a bad one. Leads me to beineve something must be going wrong with the absorption.
I work with computers. I usually sit in front of a computer all day doing different types of documentation and editing. And when my finger tips have busted open and are bleeding it is kind of difficult to type. I am starting to think the skin splits must be soaps, diaper wipes, cleaning products, touching non-gluten-free foods, dogs, or something along that line.
I have checked all of my soaps and daily use products to make sure they are gluten-free. I am pretty sure the diaper wipes are ok. I will have to double check them. I never touch the liquid when mopping. I do touch non-gluten-free foods everyonce in a while. (Can't quite figure out how to feed the ducks with a toddler without touching the bread at some point!) I have serious allergies, especially to cats, so I know that I am not allergic to the dogs.
Just tired of being sore. Thanks for all your help.
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