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Small, itchy bumps on forearm (rash?)
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Small, itchy bumps on forearm (rash?)

Hi,

I really don't know what's going on with my arms so any help/advice would be greatly appreciated!

I've noticed recently that my forearms often become itchy and whenever I scratch my arms, the area I scratched develops a pink-ish hue and small bumps appear. The small bumps themselves aren't weirdly colored or anything...in fact they kind of look like abnormal goosebumps (when I say abnormal I mean that the bump sizes aren't consistent..some smaller and some larger...but never bigger than say 3/16 inches..which is still pretty small). If I don't irritate the area for a day, the bumps eventually go down (sometimes still a little visible) and the pinkish hue fades away. That's basically the jist of my symptoms. It doesn't sound like much, but the appearance of the bumps are pretty alarming...and definitely not normal.  

I'm not an outdoors person, so the possibility of it being poison ivy or some plant is out of the question. Also, I'm pretty hygenic...showering everyday to every other day. I have an acne problem but it's restricted to just my face...never heard of ppl getting acne on their arms. I rarely have contact with animals/pets.

So...anyone have any idea of what this could be??? -.-''
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28 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_dr_f_tn
Hi

Differentials for this will be dermatitis, an allergic reaction or keratosis pilaris. These are just differentials but based on your history this appears to be a mild form of dermatitis or dermatographia. Dermatographia refers to a form of hives or urticaria wherein the skin elevates after pressure of some kind is applied on the area. Some forms of dermatitis or allergies may be induced by friction or pressure.

Avoid scratching your skin. Instead, you may apply cold compress over itchy areas. If itching is not relieved taking oral antihistamines may help. There are second generation of antihistamines that do not present with drowsiness.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same problem! It comes and goes and I've been trying to get rid of it. It only appears on my left forearm and it itches at random times and goes away in a few hours, but it comes back days or weeks later. The problem is I've tried putting ice on it and rash medication, but they always come back. It's been like this for almost 2 years now and it is really annoying. Were you able to find anything for it or can i say a "cure" for it?
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Avatar_n_tn
          been getting these bumps on forearms for about 7 weeks.I thought it was poison ivy but it goes away but before the irritated areas are healed it will act up again.Driving me nuts.Have no idea what it is.I live in Atlanta,GA.I dont think im allergic to anything but I guess I could be wrong.PLEASE HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
I've been having the same problem for a bout one month (that's as far back as I can remember noticing it), any improvement?
I'm thinking on looking for a dermatologist (haven't tried the cold compresses or antihistamines)
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Avatar_f_tn
Actually, my symptoms disappeared a long time ago. I just controlled my urge to scratch my arms and the itchiness+redness naturally went away. Yeah, sorry this doesn't really help. I hope you find the solution soon!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi there,

I had the same problem, raised little bumps on my forearms.  It happened over summer, especially on exposure to sun.  Tended to react when it got hot.

So heres what i did, i took luke warm baths, this is not a cleanliness thing. My theory is the water helps with cooling down the whole body, i did this twice a day for about two weeks and it completely disappeared.  I know baths can be annoying and time consuming, but i just made up a shallow bath, do not put in any bubble bath etc, but feel free to put any bath oils etc recommended by your pharmacist for similar skin conditions.  Also I went swimming a few times in this week, and i believe this works equally as well.  

My mum and I had the same condition, i tried cold showers and she had baths.  The showers did not help at all.  So the key is to emerse your body in the water.

So basically keep the exposed area out of the sun, avoid tight fitting clothes that could heat the area, and have cold baths... well not to cold that would be unbearable, just comfortably luke warmish, but definitely not hot.  

Twice a day is ideal because it cools you before you start your day, and after been out and about.  Similarly if the itching gets really bad,and unbearable, hop into bath.

I used others things recommended by doctor, such as hydrocortisine, this only helped with itching at first and became ineffective after a while.  Similarly it made my skin tough and scaly.

Hope this helps :)  Former sufferer
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi there,

I had the same problem, raised little bumps on my forearms.  It happened over summer, especially on exposure to sun.  Tended to react when it got hot.

So heres what i did, i took luke warm baths, this is not a cleanliness thing. My theory is the water helps with cooling down the whole body, i did this twice a day for about two weeks and it completely disappeared.  I know baths can be annoying and time consuming, but i just made up a shallow bath, do not put in any bubble bath etc, but feel free to put any bath oils etc recommended by your pharmacist for similar skin conditions.  Also I went swimming a few times in this week, and i believe this works equally as well.  

My mum and I had the same condition, i tried cold showers and she had baths.  The showers did not help at all.  So the key is to emerse your body in the water.

So basically keep the exposed area out of the sun, avoid tight fitting clothes that could heat the area, and have cold baths... well not to cold that would be unbearable, just comfortably luke warmish, but definitely not hot.  

Twice a day is ideal because it cools you before you start your day, and after been out and about.  Similarly if the itching gets really bad,and unbearable, hop into bath.

I used others things recommended by doctor, such as hydrocortisine, this only helped with itching at first and became ineffective after a while.  Similarly it made my skin tough and scaly.

Hope this helps :)  Former sufferer
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Avatar_f_tn
i have the same thing on elbows chest and forearms doc says mayb bacteria infection...anyone??
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Avatar_m_tn
http://www.drbaileyskincare.com/blog/a-new-explanation-for-intensely-itchy-arms/
It could be brachioradial pruritus.  It started on my arms not long ago, and the above link is what I found that makes the most sense for me.
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Avatar_f_tn
hello!! :)
i just started wotking as a dish washer at sheri's restaurant, and I started getting little tiny, itchy, goosebump looking bumps on my arms!! Could it be an allergic reaction to the water?? Pls help!! :\
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Avatar_m_tn
hi i think i can help i currenty have the same problem its like little bumps an my arms and chest it comes and it goes but its nothing serious to some people if you start having pain in the muscle or joint its prob lymes but it could also be arthritis its most likely caused by an allergic reaction try changing laundry detergents and soaps if you go to the doctors all they can do is take blood and test it to see what it is when they confirm a diagnosis they give you medicine so i hope you get rid of your rash
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4877070_tn?1360388734
Hey!! I know it's been years, but I came across this post and I'm suffering from the same exact thing!! : ( Did you ever figure it out or did it ever go away? It's only been about a month for me so far, but it's really freaking me out. Any help appreciated : )
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm having the same problem its on both my arms fully but mostly my forearms and upper arms itch the most but it's only on my arms. It looks just as you described it. Like goosebumps the redness only occurs from me scratching at them. If I don't scratch them then the bumps are barley visible. This occurred like 2 weeks ago I noticed it, I'm still trying to figure out what it may be or what caused it. And like you said I don't have animals and its winter so I haven't been outside to get poison ivy or anything like that . I've even switched my soap so I know it can't be that. Any suggestions to ehat it may be?
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Avatar_f_tn
I also have the same problem. if you find anything out please let me know its only been going on for about two weeks for me but id really like to figure this out it freaks me out as well and I can't think of what it could be or what have caused it
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Avatar_m_tn
Friends - I was going through the same situation for a month. started with itching and many bumps on my both the arms....I was so frustrated..
I did all search in internet and also went to the doctor who suggested to apply some allergy lotion. Still this continued and I saw that some of them suggested to look for bed bugs but I couldn't find a single.
Later I just had a thought to contact the pest control company and they have a dog which comes and check for bed bugs.. she came and showed many places where the bugs where hiding. so ..please check your home with a professional to find whether you have bed bug there..trust me..you wont see it even if you use flash light or all sorts of things..just pay 100 bucks and do a  test..
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Avatar_f_tn
So did you end up having bedbugs then?  If so and they are gone....have you noticed your symptoms declining?
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi. Anybody with this problem should check out this page. This could be what you are suffering from. It is called Keratosis Pilaris (a.k.a. KP). Here's the link. Hope this helps you out!!!

http://www.divinecaroline.com/self/what-are-those-bumps-my-arms-rough-guide-kp
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Avatar_m_tn
I get the same thing.  Got it last year, and got it again this year.  I work long hours and am not in the sun much.  To get exercise and some fresh air, I will walk for 45 minutes to an hour over the noon hours a few days each week.  It appears as soon as I do that and itches a lot in the afternoon.  I think my fair skin, lack of exposure to the sun, then an hour at peak sun time, does it.  My forearms are the only place exposed to the sun, except my face which is exposed year round.  
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Avatar_m_tn
Forgot to mention this starts in late spring, early summer when I start to walk outside without a jacket.  
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Avatar_m_tn
Goes away later in the summer, once my body has gotten used to the sun again.
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Avatar_m_tn
Thnx for the link but I would not take it is as the gospel: it is a sponsored message: this zinc cream. Also, this medical doctor - if the author is one -  tells us she prescribes cortison for itching. These have side effects: cortisons are imapacting negatively on the system. It belongs to the realm of immune suppressing approaches: a gold mine for the big pharma and medical providers but has no place in today's world. Today we try to be patient and outcome centered  and have the option of immune boosting instead. The first is like shutting down your sprinkler system the moment a fire starts... the latter is allowing the sprinkler become smarter and more powerful in putting it out.
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Avatar_m_tn
guys all of you should try using calamine lotion. It did wonders for me.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been putting up with this itch for 6 weeks now.  The itch has been driving me crazy.  I lose sleep and it is really getting me down. My skin initially becomes slightly heated in the area that is about to itch.  There is only ONE thing to stop the itch !!! Ice !!!.  My arms are scarred and very rough from itching.  I have been to 3 doctors who don't seem too concerned (hope they get it one day !! ha). Have tried 2 variations of cream...does not work....only ice works.  I go to bed with an ice pack.  I am OVER IT and would love a physician to read these posts to give us some REAL insight into the possibilities of the cause.  I finally add, not scratching DOES help BUT, one needs to go back to the breathing method used in childbirth to try stop the urge to scratch.  Happy days !!! Uggghh    
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9025961_tn?1401248943
Yea i have the same too and I was just chilling with friends then all of a sudden they just appeared I don't know what it is im going to see the nurse at my facility and see if she knows anything about it.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same thing going on and it is bad...I am going to tell you what is going on . Ixcant tell you the cure..but I can tell you CAUSES.  It is NOT "Dry Skin"  that is a TINY part odf anyone with this itchy rash. ..your Dermatologist doesnt KNOW what the cause is (Any of them). Ansd 99.9% wont tell you the root cause..they will prescribe steroid creams..they DONT work and they make your skin WORSE. I have treid 14 prescription meds...

an ORAL ANTIHISTAMINE DOES HELP..such as HYDROXYZINE 26mg ocne a day. YES it will make you sleep

These are unfortunately the causes...and I dont know the cure"

YEAST-_CANDIDA build up.. i nthe skin.. MANY causes of this.

DIABETES---YES-- get a Gluvose FASTING test 8 hours or more and and HGA1 blood test--see if your glucose levels are nto elevated. If they ARE elevated... you have problems

Anyone eating PROCESSED FOOD... its all bad for you. It gets in yoru body and it destroys.I cant give a full list here of all the additives. food dyes. peservatives and nitrates. Sodium. .

HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP..thats the next big  culprit. That will give you severe rashes. Usually from CEREAL like, SODA (Soda is a killer bothe regular AND diet), Ketchup,

DAIRY FOOD..it builds up in your skin as you get older..and it comes to your skin surface as an itchy rash

I have the tiny bumps on my right forearm. I have itchy  starting to open up and become open sdore on right ARM, and leg.

My Glucose levels are normal...therefore....(still this can be PRE diabetes and they refuse to give medication PRE diabetes)

But lets go with te ALLERGY and TOXIC reasons ove "diabetes".

STOP eating JUNK  (very hard)
STOP eating DAIRY (very hard) including cutting out for quite a while Yogurt, Ice cream. milk
SOY..Soy Sauce...CHinese or Asian food...the Soy turns to YEAST
Fruits high ir Fructose (look em up)

OTHER CAUSES..and I would consider this if the rash ges worse

GI TRACT ISSUES--including MOTILITY (ae you regular).IOf not there is a Build up of toxins in the bosdy..try an enema..use a naturual laxative. (Poly Glycol 0 (

Things that can WORK...

NYSTATIN..works wonders...anti fungal/Anti Candida cream
DIFLUCAN..it is a pill..it is HARSH on the LIVER>.and only ONE
physician ever gave it to me. itSTOPPED the rash..when my
DIET shifted BACK to anything with SUGAR or HIGH FRUCTOSE
(hey its hard to live a life without ANY sugar) Try going a YEAR
without eating ONE cookie. ONE piece of fruit high in sugar
(YES..FRUIT..fresh fruit..is HIGH in sucrose...it *****.





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Avatar_n_tn
Please excuse  my comment posted as :just" to you. My comment is meant for all in this community suffering from allergen born rash/  raised bumps. Blame the FDA really..they ALLOW so many chemicals and addictives in food that are ILLEGAL in other countries. Many of them cause cancer. But in most cases they just cause ITCHING.
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Avatar_f_tn
Well, I have the same thing.. And have had for a few weeks.
A close friend of mine has bed bugs. And even though I havent seen any I fear I do as well.
   I have been doing what little we can. But the process is long an expensive. Please, If you have this rash have professionals check for bed bugs.
  Theyre a pain. But sooo much easier if you get on top of them early on. Trust me I didnt.
    
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi, I have had this itchy rash on my forearms off and on for several years now. Until this year it has only been on one arm at a time, between the elbow and wrist. However, this time it has gone above my elbow about 3 inches. Until recently I would have said that it happens about every 6-9 months, but this time I decided to take notes as to the time frame and I have already had this for about 3 months, so maybe I was just getting it once a year, after all. I don't think it has lasted this long before, though.
Anyways, today I was doing some research and was reading about different skin issues and it didn't fit any of them exactly but the one that seemed closest was the "heat rash" or "prickly heat". The one thing that differentiated this one from the others was it described it as feeling like pin pricks. It's not all the time, but I do have bouts of that sensation off and on. Sometimes it will not let me get to sleep as it is an unbearable feeling and I can't keep myself from itching or rubbing the area. I had to laugh when I read the post by Lollypops where they had been told NOT to itch the area and they made the comment about needing to use the breathing technique for child birth. I agree. I try really hard not to sometimes, but then I just can't stand it anymore. Sometimes I feel like I could just dig holes in my arm. My arm has also gotten very tough from all the itching. In some areas, when I rub or press firmly on my arm I can feel small welt-like bumps under the skin. As I started reading these posts I was very hopeful that I had found the solution as they seemed to be written more in the late spring to summer months, which makes sense, but then I noticed farther down the list, others that had it in the cold months. So now I'm not quite as sure. I do live in FL so maybe the other people also live in the warmer regions and they may just be more sensitive to the sun. So far, I've not found anything that has relieved the itch and I've tried most that were mentioned. The other day I was at the doctor and I asked him what he thought it was and he said it was probably an allergic reaction and to try something like Zyrtec or Claritin. I bought Claritin as it didn't make you drowsy, but I can't tell you that that is making a difference either. I am usually outside during the hotter part of the day so I do think that it may still be a heat rash. I don't put sunscreen on, but I'm going to try that and see if it makes a difference. If that doesn't seem to work, maybe I'll even try covering my arm completely. Right now I'm sitting here with an ice pack on my arm to see if that helps, too. If I get a break-through I'll be sure to let you know.
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