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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

Can Dh Be Mild?
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11 posts in this topic

I have a little rash, and I'm trying to figure out if it might be DH. It seems too mild to me, from the descriptions I've read, but I'm just not sure what the heck it could be. :unsure:

I'd appreciate any help you can give me!

I've had celiac disease for 1 year now. I've never had DH. I have a gluten-free kitchen, although some things are gluten-free to the point that my daughter can eat them, but I have reacted, so there is still that issue within the kitchen. I've also had non-hive allergic reactions to food since going gluten-free, as well, so I'm trying to figure out if my new skin 'thing' could be DH, or might be something else, ya know?

A week ago, I had one little bump on my chest, and one on my shoulder, that itched like crazy, but they never got that blistery look that many people describe. Just sort of...like a tiny blister that was about the same color as my skin, but so small and hard to check out that I wondered if it could be acne, honestly. Itched for a couple days, would be more visible when itched, but the itching faded after a few days. Never got crusty. During that time, I felt kind of out of it and fluish, like I sometimes do with gluten.

Now today, suddenly it's itching again on my chest in the exact same spot. The bump still seems to be there, even though it hadn't been itching, and now there's three more. They itch some - not so much I'm going cray - and sting a little too. They are pink, but only one has more of a real blister look. Very small, the diameter no bigger than the rounded plastic top to a pin used in sewing, if that. Last few days, again, I have the big D and feel kind of blech and flu-ish.

Some other information that might matter is that I've had no iodine at all for at least a couple weeks. I have an extremely restricted diet and get very little iodine. It's mainly from a supplement or from seaweed, but I haven't been having either of these for a couple weeks. I understand that iodine can have an effect on this rash, yes?

Honestly, I'm really stymied about what could be happening. It's not hives. It doesn't seem to be acne. I'm guessing not shingles because I've had that and this doesn't feel like it.

But, I know the chest does not seem to be the normal place for DH(can it even appear there at all?), and this is really mild, so... :unsure:

If anyone has any ideas on what the heck this might be, I'd sure appreciate them! Thanks in advance. :)

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I am wondering the same thing. One symptom I had for about seven years before having the big D was that I had redness and very small bumps between my knees, and inflammation. That went away two weeks after going gluten-free, and comes back now that I have been gluten-free for a year any time I accidentally eat something with gluten in in (you know, the ol' "Ok, what did I eat this time?" routine.) When I was newly on the diet, I always got diarrhea immediately I ate something. Now I don't, but the knees react. Mild swelling and redness, then a few bumps. I have been wondering if it can be classified as DH or not, too.

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It's nice to know that someone else has something that sounds similar, in any case!

I am wondering the same thing. One symptom I had for about seven years before having the big D was that I had redness and very small bumps between my knees, and inflammation. That went away two weeks after going gluten-free, and comes back now that I have been gluten-free for a year any time I accidentally eat something with gluten in in (you know, the ol' "Ok, what did I eat this time?" routine.) When I was newly on the diet, I always got diarrhea immediately I ate something. Now I don't, but the knees react. Mild swelling and redness, then a few bumps. I have been wondering if it can be classified as DH or not, too.

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I've been gluten free for 3 weeks and am having these same small blisters, scattered mostly on my back and rib cage, but, also, on my thighs and upper arms. My scalp has been hurting and I notice I have a lot of larger bumps om my scalp that I never noticed before. I have been sweating profusely since going off gluten and my hair is very oily. I was hoping these blisters were from the sweating, but now, that they are getting worse, I am not so sure.

I know I'm in no way answering your question, but just want you to know that, yes, all sorts of strange things can happen to you once you go gluten free. This detox has been so bad for me that I'm actually beginning to wonder if I wasn't better off before I started it. (OMGoodness, I can't believe I said that. Must be high treason around here, but it is the way I'm starting to feel.)

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aderifield - did you get a firm diagnosis of gluten intolerance? If not, are you going to do a gluten challenge at some point? Because you might find going back to gluten will be 10x worse that what you're experiencing now :)

You might also want to investigate soy and casein intolerance, maybe you're still reacting to something else as well as gluten?

For the OP, I'd be very interested in knowing if anyone experiences "mild" DH. I get these "itchy pimples" - they're scattered, usually legs or upper arms, but also chest, back or even eyelids. They're very small with a white head, surrounded by a thin red circle, and super, super itchy. I'd say they're pimples if they didn't itch like crazy and were in weird locations. They don't "pop" like pimples either, if I try to squeeze em I just get a red sore/scar, so I leave them be. I have at most 10 to 20 of them all over my body at a time, so definitely not "rash-like". They don't stay itchy too long, but it can keep me awake if I get them during the night.

I've occasionally seen a few "water-blister" like items on my arms, that within an hour or two turned into the itchy pimples above, so maybe my skin is just healing too quickly to get to the rash stage?

Also I think the key is I try not to scratch them, because I know that doesn't help :P

What makes me think they're DH - they went away with going gluten-free, and re-appear when I get glutened/soyed. I also get canker sores at the same time, which I think is related?

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I've had the biopsy test and all of that happy stuff and diagnosed with DH / Celiacs via biopsy.

I know that if I get "glutened" my guts get all torn up and I will break out with blisters - usually a couple days later. The worse I end up getting glutened the worse I break out.

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aderifield - did you get a firm diagnosis of gluten intolerance? If not, are you going to do a gluten challenge at some point? Because you might find going back to gluten will be 10x worse that what you're experiencing now :)

You might also want to investigate soy and casein intolerance, maybe you're still reacting to something else as well as gluten?

For the OP, I'd be very interested in knowing if anyone experiences "mild" DH. I get these "itchy pimples" - they're scattered, usually legs or upper arms, but also chest, back or even eyelids. They're very small with a white head, surrounded by a thin red circle, and super, super itchy. I'd say they're pimples if they didn't itch like crazy and were in weird locations. They don't "pop" like pimples either, if I try to squeeze em I just get a red sore/scar, so I leave them be. I have at most 10 to 20 of them all over my body at a time, so definitely not "rash-like". They don't stay itchy too long, but it can keep me awake if I get them during the night.

I've occasionally seen a few "water-blister" like items on my arms, that within an hour or two turned into the itchy pimples above, so maybe my skin is just healing too quickly to get to the rash stage?

Also I think the key is I try not to scratch them, because I know that doesn't help :P

What makes me think they're DH - they went away with going gluten-free, and re-appear when I get glutened/soyed. I also get canker sores at the same time, which I think is related?

Ohhhh, I believe you. I know it would probably be much worse. Every time I come in touch with gluten, I have a strong topical reaction, can only imagine what it would do to my insides at this point. I am just feeling really discouraged bc my detox is lingering and I was under the impression it would pass quickly. I've getting a lot of the small blisters you describe and my face looks like I've aged 10 years in the last month. I've lost inflammation all over my body, but it looks worse on my face - spawning deep winkles that I never had before. I'm feeling absolutely yuck. Can't stand to look in the mirror.

I have not had a biopsy, yet. Mine is not scheduled for another 3 months, but with what my body has been going through since stopping gluten, I think there's little doubt that I have Celiac's though, yes, I believe there could be something else going on, also. Thanks.

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For the OP, I'd be very interested in knowing if anyone experiences "mild" DH. I get these "itchy pimples" - they're scattered, usually legs or upper arms, but also chest, back or even eyelids. They're very small with a white head, surrounded by a thin red circle, and super, super itchy. I'd say they're pimples if they didn't itch like crazy and were in weird locations. They don't "pop" like pimples either, if I try to squeeze em I just get a red sore/scar, so I leave them be. I have at most 10 to 20 of them all over my body at a time, so definitely not "rash-like". They don't stay itchy too long, but it can keep me awake if I get them during the night.

Well holy crud! I just started getting what you just described, a few days ago! Tried a new oil, felt sick, and just found out it is run on a line with wheat germ oil, too. I was thinking I was getting weird acne or something, but it is EXACTLY like what you just described.

Oddly enough, it's rather comforting to know that whatever it is, someone else in the world seems to be suffering from something similar. Misery loves company, I suppose, eh? Or rather, misery loves not being the only one so doesn't feel quite so crazy, LOL.

Thanks for the reply!

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I know that if I get "glutened" my guts get all torn up and I will break out with blisters - usually a couple days later. The worse I end up getting glutened the worse I break out.

Oh, thank you for that information - that makes me wonder even more. We are really gluten free at our house, so the only thing that usually gets me is really low level CC sometimes with a new food, often a gluten free one that has so little gluten it doesn't even bother the other two gluten free kids in the house. Wonder if that low level of gluten might explain a very mild reaction, hmmm.

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I've had the biopsy test and all of that happy stuff and diagnosed with DH / Celiacs via biopsy.

I know that if I get "glutened" my guts get all torn up and I will break out with blisters - usually a couple days later. The worse I end up getting glutened the worse I break out.

Curious??? These blisters you are talking about...are they what the Derm biopsied for your DH dx? You say blisters and the others are describing them as little pimples. My daughter, 18 mos has what these others are describing. I wouldn't necessarily call them blisters but more like pimples. I think she has celiac but has had negative scope and panel. We are going to the Derm in a few weeks. She also has what looks like a cross between psorisis and eczema on her elbows, knees, hands and feet. It looks different than the little pimples and the pimples go away. This other skin thing is not going away, even with hydrocortisone. Any insight?

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aderifield - did you get a firm diagnosis of gluten intolerance? If not, are you going to do a gluten challenge at some point? Because you might find going back to gluten will be 10x worse that what you're experiencing now :)

You might also want to investigate soy and casein intolerance, maybe you're still reacting to something else as well as gluten?

For the OP, I'd be very interested in knowing if anyone experiences "mild" DH. I get these "itchy pimples" - they're scattered, usually legs or upper arms, but also chest, back or even eyelids. They're very small with a white head, surrounded by a thin red circle, and super, super itchy. I'd say they're pimples if they didn't itch like crazy and were in weird locations. They don't "pop" like pimples either, if I try to squeeze em I just get a red sore/scar, so I leave them be. I have at most 10 to 20 of them all over my body at a time, so definitely not "rash-like". They don't stay itchy too long, but it can keep me awake if I get them during the night.

I've occasionally seen a few "water-blister" like items on my arms, that within an hour or two turned into the itchy pimples above, so maybe my skin is just healing too quickly to get to the rash stage?

Also I think the key is I try not to scratch them, because I know that doesn't help :P

What makes me think they're DH - they went away with going gluten-free, and re-appear when I get glutened/soyed. I also get canker sores at the same time, which I think is related?

I don't know if I have DH. Probably. My symptoms for DH look (and itch) classic, but the areas are small. Lime-sized ovals on the insides of my calves with a small area of raised red "water blisters", smaller on each side of my back, sometimes on my forearms. Perhaps if they had been larger I would have been diagnosed beyond "use hydrocortisone." It started about 30 years ago and I've shown them to numerous doctors with no diagnosis. I would wear shorts all winter, and I'm a 56 year old in Denver. Last November I got the flu and GI symptoms kicked in. I went gluten-free after about a month, D, brain fog, and most other symptoms went away in a week. Joints took longer. The rashes went away in 6 months, for the first time in 30 years. My Celiac panel was negative (I was gluten-free) and the endoscopy/biopsy was botched and negative. So, I probably have DH, but no diagnosis. I'm very sensitive to cc now and it I get minor cc'd during stressful times the itchy regions come back but no bumps, so far. Itchy area goes away within a few days.

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