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Could This Be Dh?
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Hi everyone, I'm new here. I have never been diagnosed as celiac or gluten intolerant, but for the past 6 years, I've come to my own conclusion that there is a good possibility I am. I do not have insurance, so going to the doc for multiple tests isn't an option. It took about 4 years for me to determine gluten may be the cause of the health issues I've been having. The first time I ever went gluten-free, and I say first time because I've gone on and off several times over these last 2 years, but the first time I took it out of my diet, I was a new person! But without an "official" diagnosis, I find myself around holidays or birthdays, talking myself out of it, thinking maybe it's all just in my head. I've had gastrointestinal symptoms for the full 6 years, hair loss, even tooth enamel loss! Muscle weakness and soreness, etc., etc., etc...I'm sure the roller-coaster of going from a gluten-free diet back to eating gluten, only makes matters worse. So after being gluten-free for some time, again, I decided to be in denial 6 weeks ago, right before Christmas, and start eating gluten again! Well now for the same amount of time, I have developed this insane "rash" that won't go away!

After living on benadryl for 4 weeks, I had to cave and pay to see the doc, the itching was making me lose my mind! The flares were severe, sometimes painful, and very widespread...always bilateral too...well, of course she didn't know what it was...sent me on my way with a treatment cycle of prednisone and zyrtec to take nightly...for...ever, I guess! That was 2 weeks ago. The rash remains, I have not had one rash free day, but the meds have lessened the severity and frequency of these flares....but since finishing the prednisone, it comes back a little more and a little stronger each day. I am still eating gluten currently, thinking maybe I should see if I can get this biopsied and checked for DH...and this way I would know for sure whether I'm celiac or not. I have just read that a biopsy positive for DH, automatically confirms a celiac diagnosis...which is a lot cheaper that a colonoscopy!

I've attached a few pics, this is very very mild and really doesn't give an accurate picture of how severe this has been....but I thought it would be worth a shot and see what others have to say. Any input would be appreciated! Thanks:D

http://s1285.beta.ph...html?sort=3&o=1

http://s1285.beta.ph...html?sort=3&o=2

http://s1285.beta.ph...html?sort=3&o=0

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Yes, could be. Infact I have DH and those pictures look very similar. I've had it for >2 years and it pre-dated my Celiac diagnosis by almost as much. Since going gluten-free four months ago I've now tested negatively for Celiacs i.e. the diet is working. I still have DH though, it's not too bad - elocon used very sparingly calms it down pretty well. I get it mainly on top of my back, shoulder, and abdomen at the sides, and head/face much more mildly. Used to get it on the legs too but not now for some reason.

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I'm not an expert by any means, and I only found out what I have is DH less than 2 months ago, but your spots look exactly the way mine did in the early stages. I've had this current outbreak for over a year now and have only been gluten-free for a few weeks at this point, but I've had some marginal relief after switching all my bath and body products to gluten free ones meant for sensitive skin. At the very least, my body wash has aloe as the first ingredient, so when the itching is really terrible I take a lukewarm shower and clean the rash gently and I have an hour or two of relief. It has also helped with the drying and peeling stage of some parts of my rash. I have also been trying to go low iodine as has been suggested on the forum here, but I think it's too soon to notice a change.

So, as I said, I can't diagnose you or anything, but the raised bumps and welts are very familiar to me, and I have confirmed DH with a dermatologist. I followed advice given here and asked the derm to biopsy healthy skin near the rash, so I definitely suggest making sure your doctor does that if you do decide to get a biopsy.

Good luck!

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Thank you guys so much for the input! Now I just need to find the right Dermatologist that will hopefully listen to me.

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Dang...you should try to find a dermatologist that can get you in today. That's a pretty bad flare up. It looks like mine have in the past. I have an appt this afternoon with a derm.

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And this is mild! I'm searching for a derm with experience with DH...I'm having a difficult time.

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    • I eat them with no issues and know several other Celiacs that eat them with no issue.
    • I am sorry that you are sick! i think you need to really adhere to a gluten free diet that consists of ONLY whole foods (no processed gluten-free foods) and do not go out to eat, until you start to see improvement.  Each tiny gluten exposure can set you back.  It sounds like you really became even more ill after the gluten challenge.   I was just anemic when diagnosed.  I waited seven weeks for my endoscopy due to work issues, so i took the time to consume lots of gluten.  Like a loaf of sourdough per day not to mention all the cakes, cookies that I loved.  (Okay, I just ate a few out of each package......)  by the end of seven weeks, I knew I had celiac disease.  I had a bloated stomach visible under my left rib cage, pinching when I bent over, indigestion, etc.  Not to mention some weird Fibro pain my my shoulders, tingly legs, etc.   Most resolved, but it took about two years. If you  ask for thyroid panel, be sure it includes testing for thyroid antibodies.   
    • My daughter, who is almost 21 and has celiac disease, was diagnosed with Epilepsy a year ago. Hindsight being 20/20, we realized she had been having seizure since she was a teenager but the random passing out and feelings of being 'out of it' were attributed to dehydration or poor nutrition and sleep habits during numerous trips to the emergency room. In our reading about Epilepsy, I have found some mention of celiac and gluten issue connections and even where a strict adherence to a gluten-free diet provided a lot of improve the with frequency and severity of seizures.  I would be interested to know if anyone else shares this experience.
    • I have also reacted to various Planters products, believing them to be safe because gluten is not listed in the allergens but have had almost identical reactions to yours.  It did not occur to me that I might be getting zapped from them until just recently when I ate some of their Salt and Vinegar almonds and became really ill and then recognized that I had reacted to them before. I have notice in the past few months that the 'Hermans' brand nuts, which have never mentioned wheat in their allergens now carries the 'processed in a plant that processes wheat' disclaimer.  It makes me wonder if all nuts are processed in the same manner and if all nuts and nut products should be considered unsafe? I know that I will not trust the Planters brand any longer regardless of whether wheat is listed or not.
    • I've heard some people say that they're gluten free, and some say they're not.. I had a container of planter's cashews that I ate a few days ago and I haven't been feeling that great since then. I thought I was fine, but yesterday I woke up with a headache and was feeling really gassy all day. Then since last night, every once in a while I'll have some stomach cramps. They last for a few minutes and then go away.. that has happened 3 or 4 times since last night. It seems weird that I wouldn't have a reaction right away though.. or at least within a few hours of eating them. I ate some on thursday and on friday, and I didn't really start to feel sick until saturday. It's been a while since I last got glutened though, so maybe my reaction has changed? Or maybe I'm being paranoid and I just ate too many cashews haha. But that's the only thing I've eaten in the past like 2 weeks that was different. Has anyone else had a problem with planter's nuts?
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