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Itchy bumps on hands after sun exposure
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Itchy bumps on hands after sun exposure

Since I was a child (I'm now 23) I have gotten intchy bumps on the backs of my hands and elbows after spending time in the sun.  The doctors my mom took me to as a child thought it was scabies and treated me for that, but it comes back every year in the spring and summer.  Hydrocortizone helps but does not prevent the outbreak.  As an adult I have tried using 45 SPF sunblock on my hands, but with no result.  

On my honeymoon in Mexico last summer it became so bad I had to see a doctor out there.  He said it was contact dermatitis probably from the water or a hand product even though I told him I get the same, but less severe, rash every year.  He gave me hydrocortizone and sure enough it cleared up, but I still have outbreaks every time I spend a day outside in the sun.

Is there some way I can prevent this from happeneing on days when I know I'll be out in the sun?
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9 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,
Allergies are genetically determined, if you develop a reaction to something it usually stays that way for a long time unless it goes away on its own.

The pathological reaction that takes place on your skin due to foreign particles is considered as allergy rash.
In your case it is a physical allergy, that is your body reacts to a physical stimulus. A skin rash brought on by a hypersensitive reaction heat from the sun is called solar urticaria.

The prevalence of the disorder is also higher in people who have other atopic conditions such as eczema. There is some evidence that in at least some individuals the condition is hereditary.

Antihistamines such as loratadine (Claritin), hydroxyzine, cetirizine can be used to treat the itch and the rash. Corticosteroids should be used only for short periods of time.

ref:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cholinergic_urticaria
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same condition.  It is horrible as I love the sun.  The rash intensifies as I get more sun exposure.  Is there anything that can be used to stop the rash from occuring, or that can reduce it's severity if it does occur.
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Avatar_m_tn
Antoxidants taken orally,like Bcarotene does reduce the intensity of the rash.Do consult your doc.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have had this condition for as long as I can remember.  I am 32 years old and I went to the dermatologist a few years ago and told him about my outbreaks on the back of my hands and elbows.  He prescribed for me Cutivate Lotion or Cream and it seems to work when I have an outbreak. He said it had something to do with my skin being alergic (allergic) to a UV ray.  
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Avatar_m_tn
i too have the same problem but it has only started since i have moved back to Belgrade, Serbia... i grew up in South Africa and am currently 20 years old. My girlfriend who is a nurse believes that the reason i hadn't had this problem back in South Africa was because the sun was "healthier" in a sense, less industrial pollution. I just want the itching to go away since i too am in love with spending time in the sun!!
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Avatar_m_tn
I am a 50 year old male and just started getting a rash on my fingers and hands after sun exposure at age 47 or 48.  It is always in exactly the same locations (top inner sides of upper middle fingers, top of hands-especially the areas closest to thumb and forefinger.  At first I thought it was an allergy to the sunscreen.  So I tried not using any.  Didn't help, but didn't seem to make it worse.

Interesting note related to the previous post about South African sun... I lived in China for two years during the time this all started.  Not saying the pollution was the root cause, but perhaps accelerated the process, or caused changes that would not have otherwise occurred had I stayed in the US.
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Avatar_m_tn
I am a 26 year old male and I have been getting these bumps on the back of my hand from sun exposure for the past 5 years. At first I tried to use sun block and avoid the sun because I knew that the sun would just give me a reaction. I always noticed that in the Spring/ early summer was the worst time  for these bumps to occur. So I decided to create a little experiment! My theory was that since I did not have a tan in the beginning of the summer that is why the rash was so bad, and at the end of the summer since I had a tan the rash would clear up. So I did what ever person does when they are allergic to the sun and decided to go tanning!!!!! So I put myself in the hands of science and gave it a shot...
I went to a stand up tanning bed every other day for 2 weeks. (Day2=4th calender day, Day 3= 6th calender day ECT)
Day 1- No Change small amount of bumps
Day 2- Few bumps
Day 3- Many bumps
Day 4- Holy crap I cant believe the amount of bumps I have on the back of my hand this is pretty disgusting I feel like I have herpes of the hand.... people give you weird looks and you family wont shake your hand anymore. But in my hypothesis I wrote down that this would be a part and in my eyes everything was going as planned.
Day 5- now the bumps are starting to get cut open doing everyday things like reaching in my pockets to grab my keys but I will still push on
Day- 6  I wake up--- I look at my hands really nervous because I feel like there is no end in site... but what is this???? The bumps look a little smaller ...
Day 7- holy crap the back of my hand has a few small bumps almost like the first day you are in the sun??????
Day 8 - Didnt even have to go tanning because I had a nice tan already and all the bumps on my skin were gone.

The week after I went on a cruise (it was just planned that way it wasnt a celebration. I didnt where suntan loation once the entire trip and I noticed one tiny little bump the entire trip... For the rest of the spring and summer as long as I maintained my tan (naturally), I would only have a really tiny bump that only I could notice... great risk comes with great reward :)
I am not a doctor... Im not telling anyone to do this I am just saying I am italian I have always had a tan and only got this allergy a few years back so  it worked for me it may work for you..... best of luck :)

John- also if you try it out let me know how it goes. or if you have any questions I will be happy to answer or I guess send some pictures!

P.S- I advise you warn your coworkers before you start... right before the end it gets really bad :)
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Avatar_m_tn
I am sorry but you made me laugh hysterically !!   I stumbled across your post as I too am experiencing these little bumps for the first time ever. I am a 45 year old female who has lived my entire life on the West Coast and in Tucson, Arizona.   I married the love of my life and moved to the Adirondacks in Upstate NY 4 years ago and I am getting this rash on my hands and chest after being outside for my son's baseball games.    I couldn't figure out what was causing it but after reading everyone's posts,  and seeing all the similarities I am convinced that this is probably Sun rash.  
Ay yi yi.... this is not good.  I love being outside.. We spend our entire summer on Lake George !!!
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Avatar_m_tn
I am sorry but you made me laugh hysterically !!   I stumbled across your post as I too am experiencing these little bumps for the first time ever. I am a 45 year old female who has lived my entire life on the West Coast and in Tucson, Arizona.   I married the love of my life and moved to the Adirondacks in Upstate NY 4 years ago and I am getting this rash on my hands and chest after being outside for my son's baseball games.    I couldn't figure out what was causing it but after reading everyone's posts,  and seeing all the similarities I am convinced that this is probably Sun rash.  
Ay yi yi.... this is not good.  I love being outside.. We spend our entire summer on Lake George !!!
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