Get email alerts Get Celiac.com E-mail Alerts  




Celiac.com Sponsor:
Celiac.com Sponsor:




Ads by Google:






   Get email alerts  Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts

Is It True? Can A Dermatologist Test For Dh?
0

3 posts in this topic

I recently went to my first celiac disease support group meeting and when the discussion of DH came up I asked how you knew if you had it. (I haven't had any blatant symptoms, only ones that could possibly be DH but could be something else again too.) I was told by a member (a ten year diagnosed celiac disease) that a dermatologist could, in fact, test you to see if you had DH. We didn't get around to how since the subject changed but was wondering if anyone has been tested and if so, how they do it..blood work, skin biopsy, what?

Thanks,

Kandee

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Ads by Google:

Well someone has to be more expert on this then me, but I've had an unexplained rash on my foot for years and after I found out I had to be gluten-free I did some research on DH. Yes your dermatologist can test for it and if I remember correctly oddly enough they take a small piece of healthy tissue (biopsy I guess) next to or near the DH skin problem.

I'm sure someone that has had this done can explain it better. My DH (I'm sure thats what it is) is not extensive and its looking somewhat better since I've been gluten free (since september 2004). So I'm hoping it will slowly disappear on its own with my gluten-free diet.

Susan

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a pretty good description according to what my dermatologist said. She also said that it is different than the usual biopsy in that it is time sensitive so they have to plan ahead a little more when they schedule it so that the lab gets it picked up more rapidly. Might want to keep that in mind when you make the appt and ask if that holds true at your doc . It may be an insurance issue with mine since I am required to use a specific lab in order for it to be covered.

I had DH for most of my life but we wrote it off as being extremely sensitive to an odd poison ivy outbreak or allergies. I would get "PI outbreaks" even in the winter. We thought I had just come into contact with it from summer gardening tools or a neighbor burning off their land, that sort of thing. Now that I know what it is and have had a DH outbreak and PI concurrently, I know that they even "itch" differently.

When I accidently get into some gluten, the outbreak begins with itchy, sensitive feeling skin. It gets kind of reddish and then up comes the rash. Usually the rash arrives within 24-48 hours after the initial symptoms, has what looks similar to pus pockets you might see with PI, an ant bite, or chicken pox though whiter, and "itches" intensely. My experience is that the "itch" is more like having a few hundred tiny needles tapping at you from under the skin...so much so that you just want to dig them out with your fingernails. After the initial outbreak begins to clear, they come and go for five or six months. They scab over and scar over, then break back open again off and on. They can leave discolored areas on the skin that can be cleared up with a lot of effort and Mederma or a similar product. Once you know what it is, you can sense an outbreak coming and recognize the differences between it and other problems. It takes a little experience, though.

Also, if you scratch much you can trigger a secondary infection that requires an antibiotic to clear it up. Keeping them moist seems to help. I use Clindagel and then keep it moist with a product containing petroleum jelly and some natural ingredients (camphor, methol, etc) to help ease the itch. Your dermatologist might have some different suggestions.

While the outbreaks I have read seem to be in a different location, mine often begin in my hairline, on my chin, and on my neck and shoulders. Sometimes they will also be on my arms, trunk, and legs. My daughter's usually arrive on her legs then "spread" to her arms and face. This spreading factor combined with the intense itchiness is what I think caused us to associate it the PI...not having a clue about DH at the time.

From what I have read and my own experience, it takes more than a year gluten-free for the rash to fully disappear. I was closer to a year and a half though I did see progress after a shorter period of time.

Hope this helps. The good news is that if it is associated with the celiac disease/DH problem, going gluten-free will eventually correct it. Don't be surprised it you have it a little worse initially upon going gluten-free. Ours did but got much better the longer I stayed gluten-free.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
0

  • Forum Statistics

    • Total Topics
      104,644
    • Total Posts
      921,583
  • Topics

  • Posts

    • The first two tests (at least in the US and most of the EU) have been replaced by the DGP tests (at the bottom) of GFinDC's list of celiac tests.  Not all celiacs test positive to the common Screening TTG.   The TTg is good and catches most and it was cheaper to run the best one (it is all about the money), but researchers realized they were not catching all celiacs.  Here is a link to the University of Chicago's celiac website.  When I was diagnosed three years ago, this site recommended just the TTg (as did the American GI Association).  Now they have expanded the list of celiac tests.   http://www.cureceliacdisease.org/screening/ Luckily, my GI must have just attended a GI conference and he ordered the complete panel for me.  ($400). It paid off.  Only my DGP IGA was positive and the rest of the blood panel (including the popular TTG test) was negative.  My biopsies revealed some severe intestinal damage.  My new health provider only allows PCP/GP doctors to only order the TTG.  So, if I want the follow-up testing to see if I have improved or had a gluten exposure, I must go to my New GI.  Yep, it is all about the money!   Keep eating gluten and make sure your  GI takes four to six samples during the endoscopy.  Maintain copies of all your results.   Your symptoms?  Yes, there are over 300 celiac disease symptoms.  celiac disease does not just affect the gut, but mis-informed and those who do not keep up with the latest in medical, do not seem to know that!   Do not give up!  
    • It's great to hear from you, Nightsky.  Glad to also hear of your steady progress.  Living gluten free is definitely a learning process, and even the baby steps are times to celebrate.  Wish you all the luck in the world as you continue to heal for the glutenization.  
    • Hi Nicky, When you first go gluten-free your symptoms often do change.  Feeling better or worse is possible.  The healing process is a major change in our gut and that means a big change in the gut flora is likely,  which can cause symptoms by itself.  Additionally the immune system doesn't stop making antibodies on a dime.  the immune system keeps working  to defeat the gluten invaders until it is darn good and ready to take a break. You really shouldn't start the gluten-free diet until all testing is completed.  That includes a full celiac disease panel and an endoscopy with biopsy samples.  It's much easier to complete testing while still a gluten eater than it is to stop gluten and go  back on it for testing later.
    • Hi Kircket, Welcome to the forum! Yes, he could be wrong.  Not everyone passes the blood tests.  And they are just one part of the diagnostic process anyway, although an important one.   Did you have the complete celiac antibodies panel? Anti-Gliadin (AGA) IgA
      Anti-Gliadin (AGA) IgG
      Anti-Endomysial (EMA) IgA
      Anti-Tissue Transglutaminase (tTG) IgA
      Deamidated Gliadin Peptide (DGP) IgA and IgG
      Total Serum IgA If you didn't have the full celiac disease antibodies test panel, I'd insist on getting it done.  There have been numerous people on the forum who tested positive on one antibody but not on others.
    • Three years ago I lost about 40kgs (Aussie lol) by better diet & exercise. All was going great til I stopped losing. I upped my exercise but bizarrely started gaining weight. One night a week of not being able to sleep soon became two, then virtually every night with either 1-2hrs tops or none at all. These weird symptoms started about two years ago, becoming worse in say, the last 9mnths. Then I started to get diarrhea. Occasionally then weirdly 2-3 days with multiple occurences then a day or two with nothing, then back to loose & offensive. My GP ran tests, including the TTga (hope that's  right) antibody blood test. Negative so he tells me that's not it. After 9mnths of this he shrugs and says, "I don't know what it is I've run out of ideas what ideas do you have?" Finally refers me to a gastrointerogist.  Private, of course and can't really afford it but we (my fiance and I) go. Stools and blood samples are ordered, basically bye, see you in a month. I have looked my symptoms up and they seem to point to Celiac. Today we went back. I have been having bloated stomach, sore back and limbs,  lovely burps, constant urination and crushing anxiety attacks folowed by depression (which I have never had before in my life). Admitted over the last weekend I didn't sleep for two and a half days and found myself hallucinating and crying to just be able to sleep. Mr fancy pants gastrointerogist says," Hey great news, the stools samples rule out parasites and Crohns!" I tell him how excrutiating the last month has been to which he replies, "It's not Celiac disease, (points at negative blood test results). Celiac doesnt present with diarrhea, anxiety and frquent urination all together." I also had a fecal occult blood test which showed positive & notes say are maybe due to a lower gi bleed, and a ct scan that says shows some damage which, in their words, could be due to a condition such as Celiac disease. He has booked me for a double scope as the next step, has a few ideas what it could be (won't tell me because he doesn't want me to be 'anxious'). Told me to consider that all these symptoms could be me just worrying and being anxious. Told him when this started I was not worried about anything, shrugged and said, It could stil have happened, hey, sometimes we never find out what causes it and your just stuck with diarrhea forever." Then as I was leaving he slapped me on the back and said, "Don't worry so much, see you soon." I need to have the scopes done but is it me or are the things I was told today not true?  I would honestly love it not to be Celiac disease but could he be wrong?
  • Upcoming Events

  • Blog Entries

  • Recent Status Updates

  • Who's Online (See full list)

  • Member Statistics

    • Total Members
      61,651
    • Most Online
      3,093

    Newest Member
    Kricket73
    Joined