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Does Dh Have To Blister?
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9 posts in this topic

Is blistering a necessary characteristic in order for it to be considered DH?....before a biopsy either confirms it or not that is. Mine has never blistered.

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Ads by Google:

http://www.cureceliacdisease.org/archives/faq/can-a-skin-rash-be-associated-with-celiac-disease

"Can a skin rash be associated with celiac disease?

Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) is an itchy, blistering skin condition that is a form of celiac disease. The rash usually occurs on the elbows, knees and/or buttocks, and is characterized by its bilateral nature; both knees (and/or both arms) are affected, seldom just one. Many people with DH have no digestive symptoms and only about 40% of them have the positive blood tests (serology) for celiac disease. However, they almost always have the same, gluten-dependent intestinal damage as those with more common symptoms of celiac disease.

DH is diagnosed by a skin biopsy, which involves removing a tiny piece of skin near the rash and testing it for the IgA antibody. DH is treated with a gluten-free diet and medication to control the rash, such as Dapsone or Sulfapyridine. Drug treatment is short term, usually until the gluten-free diet begins to relieve symptoms. It’s not necessary to perform an intestinal biopsy to establish the diagnosis of celiac disease in a patient with DH; the skin biopsy is definitive."

Some pictures from a reliable source:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0002451/

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Hi Jenn, my DH comes in many different forms all at once. Some of them are not blisters at all but still definitely DH, so I would say the answer is no.

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No, it does not have to blister. Read the entire thread in this link:

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Thank you guys for the input, it's really helpful.

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I think that, according to the experts, DH does blister. I posted a couple of medical references about this. It could be possible that after you have been gluten-free, it doesn't come back as strong when glutened.

Here's a few more:

http://celiacdisease.about.com/od/whatisceliacdisease/a/DermatitisHerp.htm

http://www.dermatitisherpetiformis.org.uk/

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DH presents as blisters on me.

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I saw a new Dermatologist today. This is the 5th one that has looked at my skin to determine what the rash is or is not. He asked if I had blisters (yes) and said he really wished he had seen a blister. I had pictures and described how I used a sterile needle to release the fluid from blisters. That seem to satisfy him that I had blisters even though I have quite an area of rash that the skin has broken and inflamed. Gave me another steroid cream and warned me about infection, told me not to scratch. He asked me, "Does it feel like nettles?" "You ever gotten into a nettle patch?" My reply is "Yes sir."

He wasn't really happy that I was on Dapsone but did take 2 more biopsies NEXT to the lesions on my lower back. He asked if I had had a G6PD test to see if I could tolerate Dapsone. Not had that so he ordered that test. So, not sure without seeing a blister and with being on Dapsone what this biopsy will show but he documented on my record that I had DH.

I told him about the Dermatologist that told me to see a mental/health doctor. He defended him by saying that the skin on my back is thickened from rubbing, scratching and the lesions healing and that is why he would have told me it was neurological in nature. I guess he had to speak up for his associate. :rolleyes:

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    • It starts as a piercing itch and the skin turns reddish with a few tiny red bumps. Then tiny watery vesicles appear and itch like crazy. The whole process from start to finish is about 3 weeks and the lesions leave a purplish skin tone and scab. I get them on the back side of both knees near the bend.  Sometimes it's just a few scattered vesicles in the same area. I've had Drs say eczema or herpes. My next step is to find a dermatologist familiar with dh. Thanks for the input.
    • DH can look like that but other things can as well. It would help if you described the way it acts/presents. You can get a dh biopsy. Read threads in this section to find out how the biopsy is done correctly. 
    • my celiac was triggered by pregnancy.  had no clue.  symptoms creeped up (started with indigestion, deemed as 'colitis' or 'ibs') but eventually all the ones you mentioned above all joined the party.  sounds like you are headed in the right direction.  one of the points of diagnosis is the reaction to the gluten-free diet.  keep digging.  half the people on here don't have a firm diagnosis (science really needs to catch up with this disease)  and a false negative blood test is fairly common, for whatever reason - if you've not been eating gluten every day for like 8 weeks, it may not detect antibodies, which is what these tests are measuring.  sorry you're having this dilemma!  hope you find some answers.
    • tom & chee!  good to know   they grill the sandwich on a separate pan?  or do you just order soup and salad.  so cool to find more places to eat out!!
    • Hi everybody,  I have had symptoms of Celiac since mid pregnancy and they have gotten worse over the last 5 months post partum. I have constipation, periods stopped, extreme fatigue,  joint pain, weak muscles, dizzyness, migraines, light sensitivity,  pins and needles in hands and feet, elevated TSH, depreason and anxiety. Was put on thyroid meds but it didn't help any of my symptoms. My doctor told me to try gluten free and reintroduce it. I tried it for 2 weeks and started feeling quite a bit better, then reintroduced it and felt worse than ever! It's definitely a gluten problem. She suggested I get the Celiac panel run so I got tested for Ttg iga, DGP igg and EMA all came back NEGATIVE! by this point I had only reintroduced gluten for a few days. She said my antibodies shouldn't go down by much in this time frame. Should I push for a referral to a GI doctor? I don't know why I feel the need for diagnosis? Probably my mother in law laughing when I said I can't eat gluten anymore and she tried to offer me things like donuts, saying it's just a little.  She just doesn't get it. So now, do I suffer for 6 weeks to get the biopsy or just stop eating gluten and be done with it.  I have also noticed while introducing new foods to my baby that he throws up whenever I give him anything wheat based. I doubt they can diagnose a baby and I refuse to damage his intestines for a diagnosis.  Maybe I should get my daughter tested as well? She is 3 and has been complaining of upset tummy and is frequently constipated. She is growing well though but is also quite thin. She is not a big eater. She may be constipated because she holds it. She is afraid to poop on the potty. Since I have had symptoms for only about 10 months, could there not be much damage yet? Sorry for the long post! 
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