The steroids do clear it up. My boyfiriend has been diagnosed with EK since 1982. Went through several tests in Indianapolis and nothing was found. No allergies to anything. His also goes away in October and ususally comes back around early March. We both at first thought that maybe grass pollen was causing it but after reading all these blogs and not having an allergen to grass, I know that it is probably not due to the grass. He gets aggrevated every year but he deals with it. This year doesn't seem to be as intensified. I'm wondering if some of you are correct about the stess making it worse. When I met him, he was going through a divorce and it was really bad. I do know that strees makes psoriasis worsen. Since he has been divorced for four years, I notice it being a little better. If anyone finds a cure, be sure to blog it to all the other suffers. Thanks.
Two days ago, it was an important day in my life. For the first time in about 25 years, and thanks to this forum, I found out the name of the problem that is affecting my hands and feet for this long: exfoliative keratolysis. None of the 4 or 5 dermatologists I'd seen could even name it.
It's been a long reading, but I've read through all your comments. Many of them, very interesting.
I'll probably post many things, but there is a first question that hits my curiosity. I'm not sure, but this may be one of the most active forums about EK in the world. If you do a web search, you find it. Whoever wants to find it, will find it. So, if there was someone in the world doing serious research on this specific topic (EK), I mean in a good lab, being paid with public or private money, trying to go to the ROOT of this problem, along a biochemical/genetic line of study, don't you guys think that he/she would have already searched for that topic, and would have found this forum? If so, why hasn't he/she said anything? Something like "I work in a team that is assessing possible genetic correlation between individuals who suffer this condition", or "we are studying lack of enzyme XXXX, which might be responsible for the dehydration". Anything that could give us some hope, or at least that could make us think that someone in this planet, with the appropriate background and material resources, is devoting time to our specific problem, is trying to find its root cause, and has an enthusiasm to find a cure. Because it is good that we don't give up, and try things by ourselves, like the ceramides creams, the gloves, or the sandpaper, but this is sad. I can't believe that there are zero resources in the world being (seriously) devoted to this, but I don't see any comment on that line in this forum. Is it confidentiality? They don't have to reveal any detail. A few words could mean a lot, to us. And I don't know about the dermatologists you've met, but the ones I've met will never find a cure. You can't finish a journey for which you don't make the first step.
So, if there is a person doing serious lab research about exfoliative keratolysis who is reading this forum, please give us a sign. We don't need much details. Just a sign, up to where you are allowed to. Thank you.
My 11 year old son has E K and had allergy tests done. He's allergic to Mercaptobenzothiazole, bronopol (preservative), mercapto mix and balsam of peru. His dermatologist told him to avoid these things (which is nion impossible) but they are the cause of his E K.
His hospital also make him a special cream which really does help.
So for everyone who suffers demand Allergy tests and ask your dermatologist to contact Gloucester Royal Hospital UK for the ingredients of Chelsea Night Mix.
Like the majority of people here I finally diagnosed myself: exfoliative keratolysis thanks to Dr Google. I did see a doctor months ago but all she said was 'it's eczema, wear rubber gloves when washing up'. Umm I do. That was as far as we got.
I tried Urea cream but all that did was make the peeling less obvious. Mine doesn't get better or worse seasonally. It's a continuous cycle of little red dots that turn into little white blisters that then 'burst' into little circles of peeling that spread out then before the peeling heals I get little red dots then little white blisters then peeling .... and on it goes. It's not itchy or painful but I do seem to have a kind of numbness in the area.
I've tried aloe vera, over the counter Urea cream, lavender oil and papaw ointment. I haven't avoided water, my will for cleanliness is too strong! Then I read Joe's treatment of exfoliating. It's worked better than anything else I've tried in conjunction with using papaw ointment and pure coconut oil with white cotton gloves. It hasn't 'cured' the EK but has made it so much better.
Every day I use a pumice stone and rub the red dots/blisters off. Then I mix Lucas's Papaw (available in Australia) and Pure Coconut Oil on the area then wear a cotton glove 24/7 at home. I re-apply the papaw and oil every few hours. When I first started this treatment, 3 weeks ago, I wore the glove at work too. I don't wear the glove at work now but I still need to slather on the papaw ointment every couple of hours or it starts looking poxy again.
It's reached the stage now that I can go out in public and not scare people. You'd have to look closely to see the slight peeling I have now.
I believe it's an auto-immune disease. They say if you have one auto-immune disease others will follow. I've had about 5 of them i.e fibromyalgia, polymyalgia, controlled Type 2 Diabetes, Rheumatoid Arthritis, chronic urticaria and angioedema. Funnily when the EK appeared my chronic urticaria and angioedema went into remission. I'm happy about that! I'd rather deal with EK than throat and tongue swelling and landing in ER. (4 times in 4 years). Yay!
I've been trying everything like most of us sufferers for 5 years, including drastic diet changes, avoiding water altogether, every cream known to mankind, just as many useless docters, and I am pretty sure this is an auto immune disorder, exacerbated by stress and has to do with the state of the "gut flora and fauna"
I have tried using probiotics and apple cider vinegar (organic with the Mother)
and so far I have gotten some relief. I'd be interested to hear if anyone else has tried this approach. Thank you all for this thread
Oh I thought I would also mention that I have had comprehensive blood analysis, hair analysis, and allergy tests, and have eliminated all the suspected foods. Have seen several naturopaths.
I avoid the night shade group, no longer eat dairy, am gluten free, have been a vegetarian for 40 years, don't drink, don't smoke, eliminated coffee for a year made no difference so I'm enjoying that again, exercise, am not overweight, use natural non scented products, eat organic, drink filtered water. To sum it up, I am at a loss as to where to go from here. Not a very positive prognosis for us sufferers.
As always thank you everyone for any helpful input
I'm back! I've had EK off and on for my entire life (and for sure it's hereditary because my youngest child has it too - he's 26 now). I've been working with the current flare up for 4.5 years now.
HOWEVER, I'm back with NEWS. I have it under control! I am absolutely NOT peeling and no blisters have formed in over 3 months. I treat my hands and feet.
There is this recipe going around the internet now for dry skin so I thought I'd give it a whirl. I soak every Sunday while watching an hour long TV show. I double it and this is what I use:
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 cup Listerine
2 cups water
It says soak for 10 minutes but I've worked up to an hour. I use a firm heel brush after that and rub the dead skin off.
Also, every night, I just started using any ole lotion... I got tired of buying expensive stuff. It seems just putting something on my feet and hands is enough to keep it from getting dry. I also put socks on every night. I've been doing this for a year.
Now? Other than a tiny amount of peeling around the nails, my feet look GREAT! Even my hands are wonderful.
I think what is happening is mostly mechanical -- not a cure -- since this seems to be an auto-immune disorder. But a weekly soak makes it worth it to me. My skin is soft and supple. I love how it feels after all of these years. Good luck!!
I'm back. I have vowed to keep trying everything and when I have found something that works or seems to be working I'll post it here.
I injured my wrist, the one with the EK and have had to wear a wrist brace. "Luckily" my EK is on the bottom of my palm. I noticed after a few days of wearing the brace (it's like a compression and it generates a lot of heat "thermoskin") my EK patch of skin got really red and manky smelling. Oh great I thought! Yet another problem to have to deal with.
Someone suggested soaking my hand in Pinetarsol Oil. It's an Aussie product but it's active ingredient is coal tar. I know it's also used in dandruff shampoo's. I've been soaking my hand in that, a cupful in 2 litres of warm water, every night for the last 3 nights then putting my wrist brace back on. My skin is finally healing! It looks so much better. I still get the odd blister but I think because of the compression and heat of the wrist brace they don't reach the peeling stage which in turn is giving my poor skin a chance to heal.
Beth is correct, I think, when she said any ole cream will do. It's the mechanics of soaking, exfoliating and in my case compression that seems to work for some.
I am also suffering from this. I got this in the summer of 2010. I stopped wasting my money on Lotrimin and got better results from all of your helpful advice. I use Goldbond with the urea ingredient. It's helps but is no cure.
I have noticed that my ring finger suffers the least as it gets the least contact. The more pressure and friction my skin gets, the thicker and scalier the skin becomes. It's almost impossible for my fingers NOT to have contact with anything so I have to use the pumice stone to keep the amount of loose thick skin down. Its much more sensitive to touch after I've removed the extra thick layer of dead skin. Maybe this is what is causing our skin to create calluses. It's becoming hyper sensitive in the affected areas. Just my theory.
I'm inclined to try the vinegar and probiotics and maybe gold bond...I also think a new lotion I got may have exacerbated it. I would never use Listerene -- for some worrisome ingredients. But maybe check what else is in it and try whatever the healer is in that product.
Thought I'd post something related: I've controlled eczema for 20 or more years now by taking fish oil capsules, up to 6 a day (which may help some on this list). Before I had to use RXd hydrocortisone which was thinning my skin and I think is really bad news. I was "addicted," but the fish oil works. Weening from the hydrocortisone was hard at first, but only took a few days of living with a little pain and itching. It's almost completely gone or completely gone 100% of the time for years now. Diet and exercise are much more important than any topical.
It has not worked, however, for this new patch of dry peeling skin (and I'm past spring chicken time now, so I'm sure that's related). So I'll try some of these things.
Too bad you aren't comfortable with the white vinegar and Listerine treatment- it's safe enough to put in your mouth and I am pretty sure my feet are tougher than that. I do the treatment every 2 weeks and I've finally KNOCKED THIS OUT OF THE PARK after a decade. I've been peel-free for six months now. I'm sure, since this is an auto-immune disorder, that I'm not cured, but HECK YEAH I'm happy! It's gone! And I'm wearing sandals and pedicured toes this summer. YAY!!!
I've had EK for 8 years now. My skin bubbles/blisters (clear, air blisters) and then will peel over 7-10 days until my finger pads are raw and pink.
I've been able to control this condition for the last 4 years, and have only had 1 "peeling" breakout over the last 17 months. I went to the dermatologist back in 2010 and showed him what my condition was. He diagnosed it as dyshydrosis / dyshydrotic eczema (haha). I wasn't going to argue with him, because I know that I have EK based on the symptoms described on the internet, which are different than dyshydrosis. Nonetheless, he prescribed me 4 different medications. Solodyn (an oral acne medication that has anti-inflammatory properties), Clobetosal Proprionate (steroid cream), Halobetasal Proprionate (steroid cream), and Epiceram (a lipid based prescription lotion for psoriasis).
My treatment regimen is as follows:
At the VERY first sign of a blister appearing on my fingers, I'll start taking 1 Solodyn tablet each day for the next 7-8 days. I'll also use a steroid cream 2x per day. And this will halt the breakout in it's path before it ever reaches the peeling stage. The combo of the anti-inflammatory effects of the Solodyn and the steroid cream stop the breakout altogether. I use the steroid cream for only 5-6 days, and then take Solodyn for a couple of days longer. For each breakout, I will rotate steroid cream. So if I use Clobetasol this time, I will use the Halobetasol for the next breakout. I've found that rotating them helps the skin to not get "used" to a certain cream. I know a lot of people say that steroid creams don't work cause they thin the skin, but I've found if I only use them for 5-6 days, my skin is fine. Especially if the skin is already healthy and is not "peely" and raw.
Keep in mind that this is my regimen for preventing a breakout to the peeling stage. In order to heal currently peeling skin, do the same process but take the Solodyn a little longer and use the Epiceram after you are done with your round of steroid cream. You may find that you need to use the steroid cream longer also. I know that your skin will get really thin, but I've found that if this happens, when I come off the steroid cream my fingers go into a rapid healing race.
The only breakout I've had recently is because I ran out of Solodyn and had trouble getting more. It is a really expensive medicine - $1,000 per prescription because it is a new med and they have exclusive rights to it for a few years where they can't make a generic version yet. But ask your dermatologist about the coupon savings program. You can get a coupon to get 3 fillings of the medicine for only $35 a pop. That would be 90 pills, which should last a long time if you only take 7-8 per breakout. I just got a new prescription with the savings, so I'll be stocking up. 90 pills should last me 2-3 years.
Hope this helps. Feel free to ask any questions. This condition sucked while I struggled with peely finger pads. It makes simple things in lift miserable, like putting on clothes, taking a shower, going for a swim, working outside. But over the past 17 months, I've only had peely skin for about 3 weeks. Having healthy skin right now is great! Give this a try. Hopefully it will work for others as it did me.
Just wanted to add to the thread - lots of great ideas here, some that I will try. I've had this condition for almost 20 years, started with one thumb (my friend called it my "scratchy thumb" - now I know what it's actually called!
Anyway, I live in the Pacific Northwest, so I don't have much trouble in the winter because of all the humidity in the air - as soon as the sun comes out, I start peeling (mostly on my fingers and palms). I found one cream that has really helped - it's called Impruv, I buy it at London Drugs here in Canada. Of all the dozens of creams I've tried, this is the only one that actually seems to help my skin heal.
Here's a link:
Best wishes to all in finding some relief, it's nice to know I'm not the only one, as I have never met anybody else who had the same thing....
My ek started 7 mos ago and have just cleared it up on my own, dr's as you know are useless when it comes to ek. I made several changes at about the same time so could have been a combination of some of the different treatments I instituted or maybe just one. About 3 months into the ek, seeing that it wasn't going away I decided to take action. I did some research and decided to try the following: I first removed almost all gluten from my diet which I know helped alot, I backed way off of tomatoes and potatoes and started drinking a mix of apple cider vinegar, honey(to make it palatable) and water 3x per day. Also sprayed the vinegar on my hands several times day. I started eating way more fruits & vegetables and what I think helped the most was taking a super multi-vitamin from xtendlife, very expensive($100 mo) but very good. There are minerals and vitamins in there that are great for the skin. At the same time I started on the vitamins I greatly increased my fish oil supplement intake.The gluten free regimen probably cleared up 50% of it but I think the vitamins and fish oil finished it off. Also, the best moisturizers I've found, w/o a doubt are jojoba oil and Tea tree oil and they both helped greatly. Hope this helps you all.
I have had this for 34 years. I have spent thousands of dollars on everything imaginable, but here I am with band aids on my feet. MDs, podiatrists , and dermatologists have no idea what this is. Only from the internet, have I found that I am not the only one in the world to have this. I will continue to try new suggestions. I don't think there is any research going on, because it isn't dangerous, or contagious , and only painful if you peel too much skin. The biggest problem is embarrassment !
I have been experiencing this skin disorder for as long as I can remember. Like clockwork, every summer my hands (and sometimes feet) develop air filled bubbles that have a slight itch. After a couple days the bubbles spread due to skin flaking off (and my peeling at them..oops) this lasts until the weather changes to cooler temperatures. After the top layer of skin flakes off, the skin below becomes tuff, tender and numb and is often associated with cracking and bleeding in the folds.
I live in California so the weather is always nice but only the summer time is when I get EK. When I visited the Dermatologist as a child they summed my peeling hands and feet to a general eczema and prescribed me topical steroid ointments. I don't know if this helped or hindered, I continued to have the peeling of the hands and feet until the first few weeks of school began.
Here is something interesting: When I was 28 I became pregnant and I breastfed for 2.5 years and In that time I did not get the EK as bad, almost not at all. Hmmm... Wonder why?
My friend is an Holistic Chinese Medicine Acupuncturist and he believes that it is heat trying to escape the body. He told be to eat foods that are cooling and to stay away from the ones that heat up the body. For instance
Cooling foods are:
Apple, banana, pear, persimmon, cantaloupe, watermelon, tomato, all citrus, lettuce, radish, cucumber, celery, button mushrooms, asparagus, Swiss chard, eggplant, spinach, summer squash, Chinese cabbage, bock choy, broccoli, cauliflower, sweet corn, zucchini, soy milk, soy sprouts, tofu, tempeh, mung beans and their sprouts, alfalfa sprouts, millet, barley, wheat and its products, amaranth, kelp and all seaweed, spirulina, wild blue-green, oyster-shell calcium, wheat and barley grass, kudzu, yogurt, crab, clam.
I have heard of using Urea, a moisturizing and softening dry, cracked, calloused, rough, and hardened skin of feet, hands, cream.
I have used Vanos, which is a Steroid cream. It is basically just masking your symptoms which I believe are here to tell us something. When I discontinue Vanos, my conditions worsened and I developed a candida outbreak. Candida is a yeast that lives in the body and is regulated by good bacteria, a steroid tells your body to ignore the Candida and because of this it gets out of control. Keep in mind that I used this on a patch of dry skin on my face and maybe the effect wont happen when only applied to hands and feet but beware to never touch face, if that is the case.
I am still looking into Prednisone and UV radiation and would be delighted by any and all information on the matter..
Keeping my hands moistened and not doing any outside work without gloves seems to help a little.
Sorry for my rant, this in my first attempt of putting my business out there.
Thanks for your input, every little bit of info and experimental outcome helps.
I keep hoping to read this thread one day and someone will have the definitive cure, at least for the symptoms. I've just had the worst outbreak I've ever had, which is strange because the one previously was one of the lightest, and I was thinking perhaps all my efforts were paying off in slowing this EK nightmare down to a manageable level. Went to the Derm doc just to ask her opinion of Prednisone for times like this when I have to get this under control and she said "it doesn't help". Not that I take her word for gospel for sure, but I'd like to hear anyone else's experience with Prednisone ??
I have just started to see another Traditional Chinese Doc who only does Dermatology, so I will let everyone know if I have any luck.
Once again, Thanks everyone for the input.
I find it interesting that your problem subsided when you were pregnant- because mine began when I was pregnant! Maybe there is a hormonal component to this. I also get it in the summer months- and it is identical to what you describe. I don't know if it's related, but I have vasomotor rhinitis- basically that all things in the air irritate me but I don't test positive for being allergic to anything. Maybe we can get all of these pieces of this crazy puzzle put together~
My 16 year old son has been dealing with the peeling and cracking (which can bleed) fingertips and toes for three years now. His is seasonal (starts in late spring/early summer till first frost. We have been to derm doc after derm doc for over three years. They have never mentioned exfoliative keratolysis. Only after reading and some have said seasonal and just on first digits of hands did I feel like I hit pay dirt. We are going to another derm doc that will talk to us about excimer laser. Don't know if it will but at this point worth a try. At this point we are praying for a miracle.
I have followed this board, off and on, for several years. Around 20 years ago my feet and palms started peeling and cracking, just like most of you describe. Embarrassing dry blister looking spots that would eventually open up and peel. My hands and feet were so rough and terrible looking. I went to several dermatologists, was tested for athletes foot, exema (eczema), etc. I've tried more prescription creams and lotions, as well as over the counter ones, than you can shake a stick at. I've tried soaking my hands and feet in tea, vinegar, hydrogen peroxide. I've slept with socks and gloves on. My hands and feet would clear up a bit every now and then, but it would always come back just as badly. I gave up and thought I was domed to have this condition for life.
Then a miracle happened! I had a medical procedure that required that I take a steroid pack and an antibiotic for a week. A week or so afterwards, I noticed that my hands and feet were getting better. After around three weeks there were no traces of EK. It's been 6 weeks now and my hands and feet are still perfect! I can't believe it and am constantly checking to make sure that it hasn't come back. I can't remember the last time I had normal hands and feet and wasn't embarrassed by them. I don't know what exactly happened or which of the meds did the trick, or maybe it was a combination of the two, but I am so happy that I had to share this with all of you. I know how you're suffering and if I can pass along something that can help you, I'm happy to do so. The meds my doctor prescribed before my surgery were-METHYLPREDNISOLONE Dosepak 21'S 4MG and CEPHALEXIN CAPS 500MG. Good luck to all of you!
I just posted for the first time today. Before having a surgical procedure my doctor prescribed METHYLPREDNISOLONE Dosepak 21'S 4MG and CEPHALEXIN CAPS 500MG. My hands and feet have been perfect! I don't know if it was the methylprednisolone or the cephalexin caps, or the combination of the two, but I feel like a miracle has happened. I'm not sure if cortisone works the same way, but it's worth a try. Best of Luck!
Hello to all, I'm back. I haven't posted since Nov 2014. I have the EK under complete control. As of now, I have none. It's summer time here in Los Angeles and no outbreaks. I used to live in Maryland where it started in 2010.
What I found most effective was the abrasion method of a pumice stone. Others here have used fine grit sand paper, I used pumice stone to abrade the thick calloused spots. I noticed that if I use the pumice stone, the calluse stops spreading and in a week or two, the callus is gone. Now I have none.
Remember to use lotion after you've sanded down the callus. Don't over do it. Be patient, it takes time for really bad spots. Before, my fingers were cracked and dry and it would catch fabric. I hope this works for all of you. And no, I stopped using medicated lotion: the steroids made my mucus lining swell up and I ended up with a stuffy nose for several months. But that's me.
Hello, I have suffered with EK for about 5 years now. On and off with very bad episodes. Right now it is the worst it has ever been. Really bringing me down and I am finding it very hard to carry out day to day tasks.
Below is an album of pictures I have taken over the last 5 years
Do what I did. Get a fine grit sandpaper or a two sided pumice stone. here's a link: http://www.tweezerman.com/store/product/2-sided-pumice-stone/
Mine wasn't as bad as yours but it got pretty bad on all my fingers. I spent an hour every other night working down the callus. After 6 months, it was all gone. I hope this works for you. Remember to use lotion after each session.
I've also had EK for 20 years & never knew the name until i saw photos online that look exactly like my condition. I've tried so many things with no results but would like to share this information that may have a connection to the condition. i started a diet that i bought on line where you don't eat wheat, dairy or anything with sugar for 6 weeks. i only ate whole foods, vegetables, fruit, chicken & turkey breast, & eggs. i lost 20 lbs in 6 weeks & followed the diet to the T. i did the diet another 6 weeks and lost another 15 lbs but in addition to weight loss, my hands were clear. I'm thinking that there is something in the foods we eat that causing the condition. I mentioned it to my doctor & he agreed & said it may be an additive to food that causes the condition. i haven't had the right mindset to try this diet again but hope to soon.
So glad you all took the time to share, my 5 year old has had exactly what you are all describing since about a month after she was born. It appears worse after time in swimming pools, but honestly it's an everyday annoyance for her. It's "summer like" here in California most months of the year, so perhaps that is why we never see it subside like many of you during your cooler winter months. The only thing I would add since her feet are worse than her palms is that shoes made from100% leather are best to minimize the number of affected areas on the soles of the feet. You are right on about the dermatologists though, we've also had the condition misdiagnosed a few times as well. Thank you again for all suggestions and ideas, finding comfort in knowing she is not alone.
i have the same symptoms as everyone here, however mine happen in the winter. i work outside during the summer and am home and off work in the winter, i think there just might be an issue with the water will look into that. i use bag balm on my hands at night and it keep the peeling down to a minimum, i use the lotion with urea during the day but it does not do much, would love a cure.
I realize that your original post was from last summer. That said, I just wanted to tell you thanks for the great post!! I too suffer from EK. And I agree with you wholeheartedly Brandi, that these symptoms we have are our bodies way of telling us something is amiss internally.
I typically don't post a lot online, but after reading your post I had to thank you. Thank you for taking the time to share the lists of hot and cold foods you got from your holistic Chinese medicine friend. I found it very helpful. I am going to take a serious look at my diet in my ongoing quest get rid of my EK.
I'm having a bit of a problem with this for the first time and really appreciate this forum.
A couple of suggestions to some: we have an adopted son who has an inherited form of eczema and, for him, peanut butter is the answer. It has a fatty acid in it that his body is evidently short of. Cheap try if that is part of the problem for some.
However, after reading some of the posts, I want to add that there is a fairly rare condition some of you who get to the point of bleeding in the sun might want to check: porphyria. My husband is a porphyriac and one of the problems is a severe form of photosensitivity and his fingers, especially around his nails, will break open and bleed within hours of being in the sun. This has only been happening in the last few years (he will be 73 this year) and did not happen before, so for us it is a sign that things are getting worse. Nevertheless, for those of you with bleeding after being in the sun, the problem may be something you want to check a little more closely for.
In the meantime, thanks for all the tips. Has anyone tried tamanu oil? It's expensive but it did get rid of toenail fungus beautifully and only a drop or two is enough each time. That's going to be my first try since I already have some on hand.
I started taking Magnesium Citrate for a different reason (muscle cramps, recommended by nutritionist.) I have only had a few minor problems with my skin since (11 months), which have been related to not taking the Magnesium.
I am having this similar issue since 4 years ago. The first time it was really bad since it got secondary infection. After seeing the specialist, he has advised that there is the secondary infection and on top of it, there is actually allergy reaction to the ointment given by the family doctor. Things he suggest to avoid are following:
*Soap and perfume, this is related to the summer time sweat and acidic reaction.
*Stress is probably the trigger.
*Chemicals in general, such as the Head and Shoulder shampoo, which he mentioned it is too strong.
Clearly, things he suggested would cost a bit more, such as those organic allergy free perfume free option, in comparison to those artificial/chemical products like soap. But isnt this is true for every other healthier products nowaday? Cost a bit more? Glove would be a good and cost effective method to have your hands protected.
I have had to have a steroid shot and a prednisone pack in Winter of 2013 and have just had to have another round of prednisone, finished in December 2014, for Bronchitis. Both times that I have taken the Prednisone. My feet have cleared up. The peeling came back ofcourse after a few months, so it seems a temporary fix, and not worth the side effects of Prednisone.
I also have vasamotor rhinitis and exfoliative keratolysis. I don't believe the EK is due to anything you come in contact with, but from within, some sort of auto-immune problem. The deep peeling can't possibly be just a skin surface problem. No answers after having it for 35 years though, sorry.
First of all I want to thank everyone for the insights. This thread was more useful than any doctor I've been to. Allow me to #1 share my story and #2 propose a solution to the problem.
I have started having EK sometime around the age of 6. Some people here have described having EK breakouts once a year, every summer. In my case I had a breakout once a year, only on my palms, but strangely always in the winter. Am I the only one? This could indicate that the condition is not weather-related (to clarify, I live in the northern hemisphere so winters are indeed cold). I was tested me for allergies and it turned out I'm not allergic to many things, so that was probably not the issue. I was always picky about my food, so my mom insisted that it has to do with my diet. Yet, without significantly altering my diet, sometime (can't remember the exact year) around the age of 16 the breakouts gradually faded away to the point where my hands were completely fine all throughout the year, every year. Right up until this year (I am now 26). My EK suddenly came back about a month ago. Personally I believe it is somehow related to stress, as this was the same time when I was under of stress. I am now trying a bunch of different creams, among them a dexpanthenol cream (has anyone tried it before?). I will report if it makes any difference.
I am very worried my EK is back permanently. I do not want to spend another 10 or more years dealing with it. The worst thing about it is not the annoying sensitivity it causes, but the blow on one's self-confidence it deals.
I thus propose a solution: CROWD FUNDING OF EK RESEARCH
I don't know about the rest of you, but I would be willing to donate a large sum to help get to the bottom of this. There are a bunch of websites around the web dedicated to crowd funding of research. We just need to provide an expert or a team of experts who would be willing to do this research. Personally I don't know anyone like that, but I am hoping someone here will be able to step in contact with a professional or an institute and perhaps bring them to this forum.
Hello, I have had EK for the past few years and I have had the results with any lotion or cream that has petroleum product in it like what's out there from Vasoline. Also I use vick's 44 which is a petroleum with eucalyptus when the cracking becomes painful. Its not necessary to purchase name brands, either. The cheap ones from the dollar stores work just as well. These creams just take care of the symptoms, but I've had true success when I control my stress levels through acupuncture.
Has anybody had any issues with EK stemming from fishing? I go down to Florida every year and like clockwork 4-5 days after I first touch a fish my hands break out in the blisters, crack, peel etc.
I know it is not saltwater or tropics (spend plenty of time in those not fishing and as long as I don't touch fish my hands don't peel) or anything else really. 15+ years of process of elimination have it down to fish. I am not going to stop fishing so I am hoping someone has a prevention. I have used the urea creams and they seem to help the healing but thus far nothing I have done PREVENTS it from breaking out.
This EK began for me in Fall 2014. I've gone down many of the same paths you all have kindly shared. If anyone has recommendation for summer gloves, that would be most helpful and appreciated! I never knew how self-conscious one can feel with this until walking the dog in a pair of black gloves in 85-plus weather.
After getting thru winter with lots of greasy and heavy ointments that didn't help, here is my current regimen:
•Urea 40% (prescription name X-Viate in the US) - twice a day.
•Halobetosol- sparingly and with on one-week "steroid breaks."
•CereVe cream as needed.
•Compound topical containing "PracaSil-Plus," which is somewhat like Mederma. I find the product soothing and protective of my fingertips. Products with the PracaSil are found through independent compounding pharmacies I have no conflict of interest here, just passing along and hope it helps; caveat: these can be expensive and insurance doesn't usually pay. Ask for a wee sample if you find a friendly pharmacist and a compounding pharmacy.
•Link to find a compounding pharmacy: http://www.pccarx.com/about-pcca
•Link to info about PracaSil: http://beta.pccarx.com/pdf_files/98534_SkinBases_10-12Apoth.pdf
•Of course, avoiding irritants and also water, most challenging as a healthcare professional!
•Gloves, gloves, gloves. Cotton gloves at night, latex-free vinyl for all day-to-day chores, and of course while working in a hospital--I go through a box per shift. And for now winter cotton-knit gloves for driving, walking, shopping.
My perspective on this condition is that it is difficult to be patient, but I tell myself it will pass. I do believe stress aggravates it. And when tissue is injured it takes longer to heal==>more inflammation, more excess skin buildup and more aggravation. Patience and persistence don't come naturally for me when I am the "patient." My heart goes out to all!
As for one of the latest posts regarding magnesium, I can't say personally but there is a lot of literature about magnesium and skin benefits. Many sources cite this journal article or mention the published study: http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/85/4/1068
Here is the PDF: http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/85/4/1068.full.pdf+html
Thank you to whomever started this thread. I found it through Wikipedia, pretty cool.
I make a lotion bar that contains bees wax, coconut oil, coco butter, and almond oil. If I use it multiple times a day--especially after I wash my hands--it helps with the peeling, and seems to help my skin get back to normal faster after an outbreak. Can't say yet whether or not it will help prevent or lessen my outbreaks, because I've only been doing this for a few months, and warmer weather is a trigger. But it smells very nice and is soothing. Just do a search on DIY lotion bars. You can make them yourself for a whole lot less than buying them.
I am 30,Asian and new to US. I am first time getting Exfoliative keratolysis.. My hands and my feet were bad with blisters and peeling..
Tried Moisturizers like st.Ives on Hand . It didnt work. First i thought this is Acne and applied cortisone cream.. no effect... Waste of Money and time... Googling helped me to identify the disease.. Later I found Goldbond healing handcream in Walmart and it works like a magic on my hand.. It locks moisture and keeping my hand far better and 95% recovered.
But with feet, no luck.. still peeling , applying moisturizers... Anyways for Hands, i suggest to try Goldband Healing hand cream-costs just ~4$.
It has been more than 10 years since I started having EK. I, like many of you here, diagnosed myself since my 2 dematologists I had visited had given me only 'put some hand cream on' type of solution without anything more for me to go on with. Pretty much the same way they dealt with my eczema, 'put cortisone on' . I suspected that EK might have some common causes as my eczema. Then good news came 3 years ago when I saw the documentary 'forks over knives'. Skin conditions were not mentioned on the film; it mostly dealt with preventing and in some cases reversing cancers ,heart disease, and diabetes by changing diet to whole-food plant-based diet. That was my AHA moment. I had to give my body a chance to heal itself. I gave the dietary change a try. Guess what, in 3 weeks my 17-year old problem of eczema was just GONE really GONE no more cortisone. Then when summer came that year, the 10-year old skin peeling EK that used to ravage my whole hands, fingers and the palms and all, scaring people, was limited to only the tips of 4-5 fingers! And it didn't peel so deeply, and didn't make the new skin feel too sensitive any more. And it has been getting less severe every year (3 pealing finger tips this year and I'm expecting it to stop there). And I can just go about my day putting shear butter on after washing my hand and nobody really notice the slight peeling unless they look really closely. The peeling happens only one round and doesn't last more than 2 weeks. This is a huge improvement. I'm not completely 'cured' from EK but I would consider it a 90% improvement and I'm hopeful that soon enough it, too, like my eczema, will be GONE. Check out FORKS OVER KNIVES and Give the WHOLE-FOOD PLANT-BASED DIET a try. It's worth it.
I have suffered from dry skin problems for years and years. After much research I am coming to the conclusion that it is an auto immune condition caused by intestinal permeability. I have had a lot of testing done and confirmed my gut is semi-permeable and contains and overgrowth of fungus (unknown species).
Recently I have come in contact with some fungus/mold while working with some mulch and developed this EK condition the next day. I had never had it before in my life. This correlation further strengthens my suspicious of a sensitivity to fungus and gut dysbiosis. I am pursuing an anti-fungal diet, anti-fungal herbs, intensive therapeutic pro-biotic treatments and the GAPS diet to heal my gut. This won't be easy but I have decent evidence it is the source of the problem. I'm not interested in temporary fixes but want to get to the root cause.
This may not be the case with everyone (fungal overgrowth) but I suspect that guy dysbiosis is the root for many sufferers of EK and I believe GAPS is the most effective way of healing for this. It is worth looking into.
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