TMI, or Dyshidrotic Eczema and Me

Have you ever heard of dyshidrotic eczema? I hadn't until I was afflicted by it. Essentially, it's a skin condition that has no known cause but plenty of theories. It could be induced because of stress or sweat, or a bunch of other reasons, but no one knows for sure. What everyone knows is that it sucks. It is a horrible thing to have to deal with.

For me, it all started one evening when my hands where unusually itchy. When I woke up the next morning, I had small blisters all over my hands and feet. Dyshidrotic eczema shows up in the palms of hands and soles of feet. However, besides dyshidrotic eczema, I'm pretty sure that I was afflicted (and still am) by another kind of eczema. My elbows, arms, back and thighs were covered by a very itchy rash. This all made it very painful to move around. My hands and feet are getting better, but now a new rash appeared in my forearms. Don't worry, I'm seeing a dermatologist in a few weeks.

While this was going on, I was very down, depressed even. It just seemed that my hands were never going to get better. On top of that, it looks horrible and it makes you not want to see anyone. Fortunately, I was blessed with the best wife in the world, who not only encouraged me and assured me I was going to get better, but who also put lotion all over my body every night for a few weeks. For 10 days, she also wrapped my hands with Glass Press and Seal, so that the steroid ointment and lotion would be most effective. On top of that, she changed Ellie's diapers and did all the household cleaning. I helped here and there with a few things as my hands got better, but wipes, or dish soap are known irritants that only make the dyshidrosis worse. I'm very thankful to my awesome wife and I'm looking forward to being able to function and help again.

One particularly frustrating thing about this condition is that there are no pictures showing the progression of the condition. This was frustrating because I wanted to know if my hands were getting better, and if things got real bad before they got well. While things may look different for every person, I'm sure that there are certain similarities in the condition's progression. So, in an attempt to help others who are dealing and will deal with dyshidrotic eczema, I started taking pictures of my hands. If you are a squeamish person, then please don't read anymore. But for all those struggling with this crazy thing, just know that it does get better, even if it looks bad in the beginning.

Below you'll find a few pictures of my hands in different stages. My hands are not completely healed yet, but they are getting better and better.



Posted in , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. RSS feed for this post.

4 Responses to TMI, or Dyshidrotic Eczema and Me

  1. I've had the condition in the spring for nearly 30 years. Some years I forget that I have it, so it's an uncomfortable reminder when it shows up just as the catkins of the oak trees start dropping. But, those plants were just coincidental, I think, as I didn't always live near oaks. In fact, it was the last semester of college (age 29) out west when I first ever noticed it. This year, living in the midwest for 25 years, doesn't seem to be as bad as a few springs, when I was definitely under a lot of stress related to work, and family life. One year, the worst one, there were so much open blisters, I could smell the 'sponginess' of the underlying dermis. In fact, that year I contracted a virus illness related to my healthcare-provider work. The blisters were laid over blisters; the skin dried out like scales, and flaked, and the only thing that seemed to work was to keep it moist by slathering with an emollient and wearing a latex-free glove (or cotton socks) on top. Gradually, it healed and I forgot all about it until it showed up in spring with a few annoying blisters. This year it's bad and I seem to itch all over. Fortunately the blisters have been confined to my hands. It's sort of alarming, as a healthcare provider to have this skin condition on a very visible part of one's body. But, it could be a lot worse!

  2. I've experienced this condition myself but I only seem to get it in Barbados. I believe that for me it's caused by perspiration and a reaction to the grass near my holiday home.
    I've come to that conclusion because even when I am somewhere just as hot as Barbados I do not get the severe blistering of this condition altough I might get a heat rash.

  3. Hi there ,
    Not sure if I have this condition .But just need some sort of help I have been to the doctor's and they have said that it is very weird and that they are not sure what it is I have got which if so frustrating I asked if I could be referred to a dermatologist but he said that the dermatologist wouldn't see me ­čśĽ I have had these blisters on my feet and hands for a few months now and they are not getting better at all just seem to be getting more and the itching is driving me insane plus I'm trying to avoid going out as I don't want anyone to see me this way can anybody help or have any advise would be much appreciated ­čśŐ

  4. I feel your pain! I struggled with this condition for 3 years and nothing made it better. Ointments and cortisone cream helped it heal faster but they didn’t treat the underlying condition. The more I used the ointment the less my skin seemed to be able to fight the condition on its own. What I learned was that foods with a lot of lectin or gluten aggravated my condition. It took 6 months off these foods and 2 years of an AIP diet to pinpoint this sensitivity but it was well worth it. My friend who had eczema all over her face to the point she couldn’t open her eyes was the one who made this suggestion after none of the doctors or specialists could help. I also have an autoimmune thyroid condition and getting this in check also helped. Good luck! I know it’s easy to lose hope and I really hope you can find a solution. For me I felt alone and frustrated when the doctors couldn’t offer any real solutions.



Powered by Blogger.

Swedish Greys - a WordPress theme from Nordic Themepark. Converted by