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I suddenly developed a localized hyper-sensitive patch of skin with...
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I suddenly developed a localized hyper-sensitive patch of skin with...

NO visible signs of rash, bruising or other damage.

About a week ago a patch of skin, about 6 square inches, on the underside of my upper right arm became hyper-sensitive to touch. I can not correlate it to any particular event such as exposure to poison oak. I have not changed laundry detergent or deoderant . The level of sensitivity stays the same and the area does not seem to grow or shrink in size. Again, no outward signs of rash or damage...only hypersensitive to touch as though it had been rubbed raw. I also have no known allergies. There is also no underlying tissue sensitivity, such as in the muscles.

Any ideas?
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242489_tn?1210500813
Skin allergy, whether to poison oak or some other contactant or chemical, always involves not just sensitivity, but an actual eruption.  This is generally red, dry-feeling, and scaly.

For that reason, and because the location of your sensation does not line up with any particular contactant, I doubt that allergy is at play.  Therefore, changing soaps, detergents, and similar environmental things is not necessary.

Hypersensitivity of this kind may reflect irritation of the sensory nerve in this area.  This may be secondary to stress, or to nothing at all.

I would suggest that you apply a topical anesthetic.  Over-the-counter preparations in this category include camphor, menthol, diphenhydramine, and pramoxine (not hydrocortisone.)  Ask your pharmacist to recommend a product with one of these ingredients, and apply it as often as needed, even several times a day.

If the sensitivity recedes, forget about it.  If a rash appears or the feeling persists for a couple of weeks, show a dermatologist.

Bet you won't have to, though.

Best.

Dr. Rockoff
2 Comments
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I've had the same condition for the last couple weeks on my inner thigh.  It's driving me nuts.  What helped (if anything).  How long did it take to subside?  Please email me, I'd like your opinion.
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A related discussion, Skin irritation was started.
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A related discussion, internal itching was started.
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A related discussion, Sensitive Skin was started.
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