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Extreme Itching Without Rash Allergy Asthma
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Extreme Itching Without Rash Allergy Asthma

i have posted on another forum in reference to a urticaria type rash that develops during exercise and w/ emotional or body temp changes.  this rash develops only on my chest and arms but is very severe.  I also get a burning itching that starts at my feet and I can feel it travel up my entire body til it reaches my scalp.  This is a completely different episode than the urticaria and happens w/ the onset of temperature change in my body.  There is no rash w/ the itching and burning.  When I have the urticaria there is rash but no itching.  I have asthma and allergies which i take zyrtec, pulmicort and albuterol for.  I might add that I am 17 weeks pregnant and drs will not do testing right now.  Any help???  Is this anaphylaxis??  I also called University of Penn here in philadelphia and they said they prescribe zyrtec to most of their urticaria patients but rarely find a cause!!???  I need to find the cause to stop this.  Help.
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97615_tn?1212682189
i just wanted to add that i was doing some reading on exercise induced anaphylaxis and cholinergic uriticaria and its seems that what i describe is both at separate times.  Never together.  Where does this lead me and what specialist do i start with.  My immunologist does not specialize in urticaria???
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Avatar_n_tn
I get a very itchy small rash on my legs when I go walking.  Not all the time, but most of the time.  A while ago, I read a medical column by Dr. Donahue, which described exactly what I had.  Actually, he had two possible exlanations.  One, was cholinergic urticaria.  People who have this release acetycholine when their body temps rise.  Acetycholine is a nerve chemical, which activates cells that release histamine, which in turn causes the itch and rash.  An antihistamine is recommended for this condition before exercise.  If you are considering this diagnosis, make sure you check with your doc about taking any antihistamine, which I am sure you would do since you are expecting (congrats).  The other condition that he mentioned is exercise induce anaphylaxis, in which a rise in body temp causes a dramatic reaction.  Blood pressure drops and the skin breakes out in large hives.  Headache and abdominal cramps are common.  In the article the doctor stated that the reaction can be of such magnitude that the person passes out and requires emergency treatment.  Talk with your doc about these possibilities.  This article that I have is from 1999.  I saved it because no one ever heard from getting hives and itches while exercising.  Good luck and congrats...
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Avatar_n_tn
Sorry for the third post, but maybe the meds that you are taking are allowing for the rash, but are inhibiting the itch?  Just a thought.  Signing off permanently, now....
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Avatar_n_tn
I just read your second post, and you are already in the ball park with this.  As for which medical specialty, I am not sure, but I would maybe start with an allergist or an internist.  Keep at it, I am sure you will get answers.
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Avatar_n_tn
Only when I take a walk around the neighborhood to exercise.  Another weird thing happened yesterday to one of my daughter's friends.  She jumped into our pool, belly flop style, so she hit the water pretty hard.  Only on the places of her body where she hit the water really hard, she broke out into hives, some of the very large.  Did not itch.  Just hives.  This little girl does have allergies to grass and certain other things.  But, I have never seen skin react to a water stimulus like this.  And, she had already been in the water for about 15 minutes with no problem.  Just after the belly flop.  Go figure that one out...
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97615_tn?1212682189
thanks for feedback....i considered the meds messing things up but i had an episode of no rash post an episode w/ rash!!!  So weird, these two seem to be living simultaneously and i cant seem to find what triggers the one w/ out a rash.  I willkeep searchingm, thanks!  Do you still present w/ any of these symptoms??
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Avatar_n_tn
I read your posting about your problem.  I arrived back from Mexico two weeks ago and had got very burnt there.  I peeled and now that my skin appears physically fine, I have an itch on my arms and shoulders that will not go away.  I have to plan my day around this.  I just want to be at home without anything touching my skin ina  cold environment.  In addition to that, I am also 17 weeks pregnant.  this is so extremely frustrating.  I have never had this problem before and it is literally ruining my life.  I feel like I am going crazy and want to cry about this.  Any suggestions or remedies?  I have tried topical products but of course cannot take and medicine for it.  
Amy
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Avatar_n_tn
My sister Amy did the same thing back in 2000.  You dont lay in the sun when you are pregnant.
You will burn ten times faster than you have in your whole life. She applied shopped clothes to her burns.
My problem is that I started itching two days ago. It started in my palms and has traveled up to arms, neck, face and head.  No bumps not rash nothing??????
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Avatar_n_tn
That was Tea soaked clothes
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi Guys, I have a similar problem. I am a 20 year old collage student and every time that  my body temperature rises due to a change in temperature caused by various situation like going from out doors to indoors (during winter) and exercising, my upper body feel like i am getting electric shocked. Mostly in the back and wrist. usually after 2 to 3 min of that i start to feel cold chill from my lower back up to my upper back follow by extrema itch in my scalp. If it gets really bad my wrist starts to have what can only be described as tiny lumps. the lumps are as white as snow with a total volume of 2x2x2 mm, below the lump (the skin around my wrist) turns as red as blood. this will continue for about 15 to 20 min and after that no matter how hard i exercises or try increase my body temperature in any way the itch and wrist stops. I wont get any of the above symptom if i am already sweating from before. Any idea if my problem is even remotely similar to the previous patients ?
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Avatar_n_tn
i also have a similar problem.  im a 26 yo male.  whenever i experience even a small amount of stress, during exercise, and temp  changes from cool to hot, i get the sensation of heat and needles all over my body.  starts on the hands and feet and then develops rapidly over my trunk, arms, scalp and somtimes thighs.  it lasts typically only momentarily but it miserable.  i know what your saying when you describe the feeling of getting electrically shocked.  i have found no signs of rash when these epsiodes occur.  and, they are typically followed by an immediate sensation of chill.  this used to happen to me when i was in junior high. then it disappeared for years.  came back a year or two ago but only brielfy.  now, its been happening to me since somtime this past summer.  we are now in november.  anyway, no amount of itching helps.  cooling off or stepping outside or away helps.  or just riding it out and trying to remain calm. i may remeber having the bumps on my hands when i went thru this when i was 15 or so.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have a 15 year old son who at 5 was treated for asthma with an inhaler. after a year, it went away
as if he never had it.  Last year when Fall came around he was getting a rash and itching on and off almost everyday and we could not get a grip on this. The doctor said it was not asthma and we went months trying to find out what this was...he was even tested for cancer! After tons of money and many negitive blood tests, I told the doctor that I believe it is an asthmatic rash. He thought I was nuts. I don't really care, I just want my child to sleep at night...it really screws up the school day also.  I have been giving him 25mg of benedryl as needed which seems to be all the time until the spring. He plays Lacrosse and never has a break out or rash with itching. Never has shortness of breath at all and no headaches.  In the Fall and winter he snowboards almost everyday and we go through HELL trying to keep him from itching when he gets home from the ride.  We do not let the house get hotter than 65 degrees, and we do not light the wood stove over night. The fire has to die down around 6pm and doesn't get relit until 5am when I get up.
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478342_tn?1241372952
My itching started about 5 years ago. I would walk to school during the winter and the longer I walked and the more my body got heated up I would start itching uncontrollably all over my body including my face. Then there would be little bumps over me that I guess are hives. This happens every winter in to the beginning of Spring. I can't workout because I can't get hot thats when I start itching and my skin gets flushed red. I also do not sweat and I even get the itching in my sleep when I dream about something strenous. It also happens when I get emotionally stressed, suprised, or angry. I can't get emotional without the itching affecting me. I went to the doctor and she told me to take over the counter Zyrtec because she thinks I might be allergic to the winter because of the point that I can't step into warm buildings without myself itching because of coming outside from the cold. The Zyrtec is not working and I need a solution to my problem because I can't even hold a job during the winter because of the itching problem. I haven't worked all winter and now its spring and the itching still isn't gone. I am 6'1" 185 pound black male. If someone has any kind of solutions that would be helpful to me I would be most grateful.
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Avatar_m_tn
I have a similar problem. During the winter months (I live in Calgary which is a dry area), beginnings of workouts or sports tend to increase my body temperature resulting in an itch all over my body. Visible dilations in blood vessels of the hands and arms are seen. Eating hot foods or entering a room temperature building after walking outside in the cold also triggers the persistent itching, without any visible signs of rash or changes to the skin. The itching is often followed by a quick chill and usually dissipates after I start to sweat. I have tried topical corticosteroid ointments in select areas of the body in which itching is more prominent but there has been no change. Daily moisturization of the entire body does not help much either. I have seen both a GP as well as a dermatologist several times and they have failed to help unfortunately. Any ideas as to what the cause of this problem is? It has been persistent for several years now. I am a 19 yr old male.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,
Cholinergic urticaria is a subcategory of physical urticaria (aka hives) that is a skin rash brought on by a hypersensitive reaction to body heat. Symptoms follow any stimulus to sweat such as exercise (sometimes called exercise-induced urticaria), heat from the sun (which could also indicate solar urticaria), saunas, hot showers (reaction to water can also indicate water urticaria), spicy foods which may cause an increase in body temperature or even stress due to blushing or anger.
The visible hives (sometimes called heat bumps) appear as a multitude of small 2-3 mm welts typically surrounded by patches of red skin. The affected area will often feel warm and can be extremely itchy or exhibit a burning sensation. Typically the rash occurs on the upper trunk and the arms but can appear on other parts of the body.
Cholinergic urticaria can be very difficult to treat.Often it is handled just with limiting one's exposure to triggers such as strenuous exercise or heat. For some, the reaction can be limited by making sure to wear light breathable clothing allowing the body to remain cool. Also, gradually warming the body with light exercise first can help limit the effects in some people. Since an attack can often be felt coming on, it can sometimes be halted by rapid cooling, such as applying cold water or an ice pack to the skin.
Drug treatment is typically in the form of antihistamines such as loratadine (Claritin), hydroxyzine, cetirizine and other H1 receptor antagonists.
Stress management can sometimes lessen severity and occurrence.
REF:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cholinergic_urticaria
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Avatar_n_tn
My 18 year old  niece Briana,  who carries an epi-pen, recently began training to compete in a half marathon to benefit the Lymphoma & Luekemia Society.
Every time she runs, about 1 mile in, both feet start burning and are so painful she has to stop.  There are no noticeable signs of hives or wheals.
Athlete’s foot has been ruled out as has, any orthopedic problems,  PF and heel spurs and Cardiac.
Briana said this burning has happened before when wearing cleats and playing lacrosse, and another time when she was snowboarding.

But this  running about a mile is very consistent –it happens everytime.
The podiatrist is stumped and told my sister in law to go see a neurologist. Needless to say my sister in law is a nervous wreck and is hesitant to put Briana through this unnecessarily.

I have read online about Urticaria cholinergic and I almost dismissed it  because it appeared that HIVES must be visible, but 1 article had included the following statement and a sentence caught my attention however I am not 100% sure I comprehend it.

Symptoms of Cholinergic Urticaria
The blazes are sometimes the only sample that is visible.

I read about 8 different articles on Cholinergic Urticaria and only one had the above statement.  

Before I tell my sister in law about this can you please clarify.  Briana’s only symptom is burning feet mid sole after running about a mile –it initially starts in her left foot & quickly continues the right foot.
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1154571_tn?1262218407
I wanted to know if anyone knows anything about what this could be.  I saw a doctor years ago and he basically said he didnt know, maybe allergies.  
Ever since I was about 17 this started happening when I went running...I would run for a while and then "the itchies" would start.  First it would be an EXTREME itch on the top of my upper legs.  I would run or walk and try to ignore it, but the itch would get deeper and stronger until I couldn't stand it and had to stop and scratch it.  It would feel better a second then it would spread to my hips, the rest of my legs, which again...I'd try to ignore, then the itch would become overwhelming and I'd scratch.  It would eventually spread all over my torso, legs, back, arms....but not my head.
I would run home with my entire body itching horribly, scratching as I would run, and then I would try to take a oatmeal bath, lotion, ice packs...anything!  But nothing would make the itch stop except time.
This never seems to happen when I go on the treadmill indoors and it didnt happen when I just go for a slow walk outside...normally.
Now I'm trying to go on walks with the baby in the stroller.  I was walking briskly today and it happened again!  I had to race home so I could just sit still so the itchies would stop.  I'm tired of this!  It's keeping me from excersizing!  Anyone have any ideas I could bring up to the doctor?? I've noticed doctors don't always think of everything...
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Avatar_m_tn
yo guys i got the same thing, you gotta take H1 and H2 inhibitors at the same time to get any real relief from the hives. I take reactine 20mg which you need a perscription for and for the H2 i take ranitidine. Works pretty good for me.
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Avatar_m_tn
My itching started about 3 weeks ago. I got back from Mexico 3 weeks ago. I didn't burn in Mexico but I did receive a pretty bad burn 2 weeks prior to Mexico. It started on my lower legs then to my thighs...now it's solely my stomach! I have no idea what is causing it. Am I allergic to something? There were very small bumps on my legs but no visible signs really on my stomach like a rash or anything. It's hard to tell bc I'm always scratching it which makes it red!! I am so miserable. It feels like poison ivy, of course it's not but it's that miserable. I can't sleep at night bc my stomach gets too hot. Any ideas???  I think I'm gonna go to the doc in the morning.
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Avatar_f_tn
I went to the doctor for the same condition as well...
it's been more than 3 years that I've been having itches when I go for a walk or jogg. It doesn't happen all the time though, sometimes, usually I have nothing for a few months and then out of the blues the itchiness... It's so annoying, You are on the streets and the only thing you wana do is sit down and scratch... even scratching doesn't stop it! The doctor said that it's urticaria and that I've got to take antihistamines before I exercise or go for a long walk.
The thing is that I can't anticipate it! It can also happen at times when I'm walking for only 5 minutes on my way to work. and again, nothing for a few weeks. I've got to find something I can take instantly when I feel it coming...
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Avatar_f_tn
I went to the doctor for the same condition as well...
it's been more than 3 years that I've been having itches when I go for a walk or jogg. It doesn't happen all the time though, sometimes, usually I have nothing for a few months and then out of the blues the itchiness... It's so annoying, You are on the streets and the only thing you wana do is sit down and scratch... even scratching doesn't stop it! The doctor said that it's urticaria and that I've got to take antihistamines before I exercise or go for a long walk.
The thing is that I can't anticipate it! It can also happen at times when I'm walking for only 5 minutes on my way to work. and again, nothing for a few weeks. I've got to find something I can take instantly when I feel it coming...
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