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Skin Peeling On Tip Of Thumb
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Skin Peeling On Tip Of Thumb

     For more than a month the skin on the top of my thumb at the tip of the nail has been peeling. When it started it dried out and cracked open and peeled back revealing fresh pink skin underneath. As that skin lightens and "matures" it cracks open, peels back and reveals a new layer of skin. Its a never ending cycle. There was never bleeding or pus, but when its revealing the new skin it is tender. It's round, about the size of a pencil eraser with half of it exposed and the other half under the thumbnail. As the thumnail grows the part over the "infection" turns yellow. It never gets any bigger but it does move a little from side to side. It's only on this one thumb. Years ago I had the same thing happen on the same thumb and my doctor prescribed an ointment over the phone which seemed to get rid of it. This time the ointment isn't working, nor is anything else I've tried for fungus, infections, bacteria, etc...
    I have an appointment with a dermatologist, but it's not for another month and I'm freaked out as to why this isn't healing. Any advice? And why is it always and only on the same thumb?
Thank you.
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Most likely this is eczema.  it does not sound like a fungus, bacteria, or any other kind of infection.  This is an annoyance, and nothing to be freaked out about.  I suggest that while you're waiting to be seen by the dermatologist that you apply over-the-counter 1% hydrocortisone twice a day, with petroleum jelly on top of it.  Otherwise, just leave it alone till you're examined.

take care.

Dr. Rockoff
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