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itchy toe blisters
I have blisters on several of my toes (on both feet) and it's not from athlete's foot or poor shoes. The blisters are extremely itchy/sore and are the size of a pea. I have one on each of the first 3 toes starting with my big toe. They are mostly on top of my toe between the last knuckle and my toenail, but one is on the side/tip of one toe. They are not true blisters in that there is no fluid sack. It is simply a very swollen and red hive. It seems like really firm and inflamed tissue. There's no scaling or flaking skin, in fact, it's shiny and taught from the inflammation. The itching and soreness is so bad that it has woken me up in the middle of the night. The itching is mostly at night, but I can still feel them during the day. I put OTC hydrocortisone and/or benadryl cream on them at night but it helps little.

The same blisters last about 2 weeks and then the healing process begins and they slowly disappear. I had at least 3 separate bouts of these blisters last winter that ended in March. I did not get a single blister after that until they returned last week (Dec. 6) which is around the same time it started last year. It is independent of the shoes I wear. For example, the blisters appeared last week and I've been wearing those sneakers for over a year. I ski often in winter, but I haven't put my boots on yet this year. My diet hasn't changed. My address and work haven't changed. The only pattern I can see (if there is one) is that it happens in winter months.

I have no other symptoms or allergies. I eat healthy, stay active and just got a clean bill of health from my physician after an annual physical. I am straight and not currently sexually active. I don't have diabetes and have never been diagnosed with any other disease.

I have not seen a doctor yet for this one, but I will call tomorrow. I found an old post on this website that also sounds like my condition.

http://www.medhelp.org/forums/Dermatology/messages/31698.html

Any advice?

White Male 33yrs old. 5'5" 135lbs.

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im 15.... this is year number 2 for me its cold outside being winter...year round i have cold hands and feet... my feet dont itch really but thy are klike super red where the bumps are and im scared they arent going to go away and i cant wear socks and slippers too long cuz my feet sweat very adly i dont kno what to do please help me!!!!!! :(
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My 6 year-old seems to Chilblains. She suffers from it for the third winters already since we had moved to N.H.. very cold here! Many posting here claim that soaking the feet in hot water will help. But I wonder why she suffer the most while she is having hot bath, especially when the water is  warmer, her toes became red and swollen right away. Anybody know the reasons?
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Reading this blog is the first time I have realized I'm not the only one with terrible toes during the winter so THANK YOU.  I am 22 years old and the (pernio I guess) has been going on for about 3 years now every winter.  I have always had bad circulation and have had raynauds in my fingers and toes before.  Now I wake up at 3 AM feeling like my feet are on fire.  I immediately apply cortizone cream which stops the itching and allows me to go back to sleep.  I have taken everyone's advice for months now to keep my feet warm with socks; however, when my toes get too warm, they get irritated and inflamed.  I don't know if it is better to let the blisters air out by not wearing socks or if I should continue to keep them warm.  My feet are generally always freezing, but I don't notice until I touch them with my hands.  It is weird.  I may try the seaweed wrap...  
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Calamine lotion is the only thing that has helped me.  I make sure I keep it on my feet both day and night, and re-apply after showering.  It provides me enough relief that I can sleep undisturbed at night.  Before I used Calamine, I was like everyone else, I wanted to cut my toes off my feet the itching was so bad.  I pray that it continues to work for me and hope that it works for others as well.
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Hello all,

First of all, I would like to thank you for the information and ideas. It hit me out of nowhere, I didn't know what to do and you all helped me to understand. Thank you.

Now, here is what I did. I went to an acupuncturist for a different reason and showed him my feet. 2 sessions helped. My toes were like sausages with blisters all over them, itched somewhat horribly. Well, I cannot explain what he did actually, but he stuck needles on the top of my feet. The other things he suggested are: to soak or wash my feet in warm water at least twice a day and use triple antibiotic ointment (i.e. Neosporin) on them. When the blisters burst or you poke into them and liquid gets out, you can use iodine to disinfect and make them dry faster. I'm almost back to normal now, and it took only 5 days to recover.

Calamine lotion also helps.

I hope that would help at least some of you. Good luck!
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Boy, it is so strange how we all suffer from the same symptoms and yet we all have so much trouble getting diagnoses and/or treatments from medical professionals.

I suffer from the exact signs and symptoms described by the majority of the posters to this forum.  Four years ago, I had my first outbreak, which (coincidentally?) followed my only experience of gout ever in my life (for reference, I am a 25 y.o. woman, in excellent health, very health weight, exercise frequently, but do have low blood pressure and poor circulation, as well as a family history of gout and potentially also chilblains).  At that time, I had glistening red, swollen toes that itched and burned tremendously when exposed to hot shower water or covered by a blanket at night.  I couldn't help but scratch in the beginning, which led to the development of bluish spots on the itchiest parts of my toes.  My doctor was perplexed, suggesting the possibilities of a fungal infection, eczema, or chilblains, without being certain of the diagnosis.  She was also concerned because of the proximity of this outbreak to my gout episode, so she performed tests for lupus.  She recommended using athlete's foot medication and hydrocortisone concurrently to alleviate the symptoms.

Although no diagnosis was ever made, the problem cleared up after a few weeks during which I followed my doctor's orders and also wrapped my toes loosely in rolled cotton to reduce itching caused by friction.  The disappearance of my symptoms also correlated with an improvement in the weather if I recall correctly.

Since that time, I have had a few minor outbreaks of glistening red, itchy toes, but nothing major... until this winter, that is.

Starting at around the same time as the first outbreak (early January), the redness, intermittent swelling, and itchiness returned, but with the addition of blueness and small hives, which I had only seen four years before with the initial occurrence.  I was out of my usual treatment (athlete's foot spray), so I decided to see a dermatologist to try and best direct my energy and resources toward relief.  At my appointment, the signs appeared mild, and the dermatologist thought it was a minor skin irritation or allergy.  In the days that followed, the signs and symptoms got much worse, especially the swelling and small hives.  I tried finding ways to alleviate the symptoms, the best of which was icing my toes (although I know now this was probably not a good idea).

The next week, I saw an internist.  She was confused, ran gout tests, did extensive blood work, and ordered x-rays, ultimately referring me to a podiatrist.  When she failed to follow up with me at all, I decided it was time to take matters into my own hands and focus fully on relief.

For the past 10 days or so, I have tried everything: hydrocortisone, athlete's foot spray, wrapping my toes loosely with rolled cotton, keeping my feet warm, keeping my feet cool, walking in the ocean, taking NSAID's.  So far, nothing has made a lasting impact on the itching, although the athlete's foot spray appeared to reduce the redness and swelling.  I have also developed a pea-sized, hard, flat, disc-like knot under the skin of one toe, which is gradually beginning to look more like a surface-level blister.

I'm awaiting my appointment at the podiatrist, but I am happy to have read this discussion because I feel much more educated and am almost certain I am suffering from chilblains.

To those who don't feel the environmental factors suggest this diagnosis, I wanted to mention that I lived in warm climates during both major outbreaks, and my current climate is rather dry (I lived in North Carolina the first time; I now reside in southern California).  I cannot correlate my outbreaks to any one experience of cooling and warming, and yet I suspect this happens to all of us quite frequently without our noticing.

I wish I had a good answer for the itching and burning - it sounds like we're all just doing our best to get through this, and I'm no exception.  I will say, my symptoms are terribly uncomfortable, and they have persisted for about five weeks now, with varying degrees of intensity.  You can do it!  (But, hey, if anybody comes up with a good solution, please do post immediately.)

I'm going to try keeping my feet warm now after reading this forum, even though that sounds so very uncomfortable.

WISH ME LUCK!
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I am also in SoCal and notice that anytime the weather gets below around 60 degrees (we're pretty soft here in SoCal!), the red, itchy toes start to appear.  A dermatologist has me trying Vanos cream but I'm not sure it works or not b/c once the weather warms up, the itchiness goes away, so I don't know if it's from the Vanos or the weather.

This winter, I started to wear socks all the time so that my feet won't go through big temperature changes.  This has seemed to help compared to last winter, but then again, I can't be sure because it was a lot colder here last year.

The only thing that consistently has helped is to spray some canola oil on my toes when they start to itch.  It relieves the symptoms but I sure would like to eliminate the cause.  I wonder - did people have itchy, red toes 20 years ago like we're all having here now?
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It all started on my middle toe, intense itching with the feeling of a lump under the skin. The whole toe felt strange, numb may not be the right word. Then there was a slight swelling along the base of the toe to the second toe. The doctor calls this a tendon inflammation and has ordered blood test. Now 1 week on, both toes have a huge blister on the top. I am in Jamaica and was in the second day of an exercise program when this thing started. Tried soaking in epsom salts which could have made the swelling and blisters worst.
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I just want to start by saying thank you to all of those who have posted here and made this thread popular.  Your stories are going to help a lot of people.  Also anyone new to reading this, read it ALL!!  So many stories!  You're not alone in your suffering!

gr99, It's been a relief to read your progress over the recent years.  I myself have had this type of condition a handful of times, but I never understood it.

At first anti-fungal creams and powders (Desinex, hydrocortisone, general brand foot powders/sprays) seemed to fend it off and within a week or two it was gone.  But last new years was the worst case ever and I could not resist the itch for fear of never sleeping again and breaking my teeth from clenching them.  So I scratched with towels and loved the temporary relief.  I found yet another combination of Kroger brand Anti-fungal cream and Zeasorb-AF powder that seemed to ease the itching on contact.  I thought I was cured.  Always washed my feet twice a day, dried thoroughly, and applied ointment and powder before socks go on, put powder in shoes, etc.

But what always concerned me was that all the stories of althete's foot talked about dry and cracked skin between toes.  I had red blisters on top and usually around the tips.  It wasn't adding up.  This winter it struck again.  Just one toe.  I did the althete's foot remedy route.  After a few weeks I thought it was on its way out.  Then a blister struck the toe next to it with a vengeance.  I instantly knew my days might be numbered before it spread throughout the rest of them and possibly on to my other foot.  My goal was to avoid scratching like last year at all costs.

So the drama continues and it gets worse.  I get to the point where I soak my toes in vinegar, recommended by my mom's discussions with other people, again under the impression it's athlete's foot.  Tonight I woke up (like usual when my body temp has warmed everything up nice and toasty) with burning, itchy, red swollen toes.  I instantly went for that hopeful vinegar.  After 20 minutes of no itch relief other than the cool sensation of the liquid, I felt entirely helpless and scratched the mess out of them with a towel, never my fingers.  Odd how after you scratch them everything swells up, but the itch subsides and doesn't come back for a while.  So in my desperation I went online with the goal of doing more research and scheduling an appointment with my doctor later in the day.  I punched into google "itchy blistering swollen toes" and this little thread was number one.

Circulation...chiblians.  I'd never heard of it.  Not even after 2 years of plugging in symptoms under the guise I had something else.  But one thing I do know.  I live in a relatively cold house, with a heater vent under my computer desk where I sit daily.  I tend to take the socks off sometimes after work and my feet get cold, or walk around in the morning for breakfast barefoot and my toes become ice cubes and I really look forward to that HOT shower to warm up all the extremities and start the day.  I am SO familiar with the extreme hot to cold all the time.  Thinking I had athlete's foot had me with my socks off all day so I had frozen feet, it's no wonder they weren't getting better!  I also, based on the description of Raynauds explained above, believe my mom has Raynauds: always getting numb white fingers at the least bit of cold temperatures.  My dad also has this blistering toe trouble, but it's usually in the summer.  He's a real fan of the hot tub too now that I think of it.

I plan to visit the doctor soon to have him check things out, share what I have learned tonight, and hopefully get some itch relief and preventative solutions prescribed.  I really was feeling hopeless.  I hope this thread continues to help many more people!  Expect to hear back from me, I want to have good news!!!
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oh, and forgot to mention, I'm female, 29 years old and live in Michigan, a good extreme climate state.  I don't go out a whole lot in the winter, but the house temperature is always fluctuating between the heater being on and off, and is generally always cold this time of year.  I'm 5'6" and 155 lbs and ALWAYS tend to be colder than most despite if I'm at work or at home, or someone else's house.  I'm cold, no one else ever is.  Maybe this is a bigger concern than just being a low muscle mass girl?  That was always my excuse.  Maybe the circulation thing is the culprit of that as well.  Anyway, more to come later!!
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The moment I saw the image on wiki of chiblians it made me cry  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chilblains
That's exactly what my feet look like.  You have no idea how much this diagnosis means to me.  Sorry for dragging this out, still have yet to schedule a doctor's appointment.  It's just such a stressful and tormenting condition I can't help but be so grateful.
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I have had a similar problem for some time.

It is often associated with autoimmune diseases like Reynaud's, Crohn's/UC  and psoriasis.

To ANYONE reading this thread: Not all chilblains are caused by this (some are just caused by neglecting toe warmth). But if you already have some kind of an autoimmune condition, and these symptoms come back year after year... it might be time to have it looked at by a specialist.

I was diagnosed with Reynaud's and psoriasis. During the diagnosis, they discovered that I carry a  gene called HLA B27 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HLA-B27

I am now being looked at closely by a rheumatologist, because that gene is also associated with RA and spinal arthritis. Arthritis in the feet can often start with these annoying blisters. And then for some people (maybe after a few years of chilblains and itchy skin, the inflammation  eventually moves to the joints and destroys/damages them.

Not to alarm people, but blisters on the toes that come at winter and go away in the sunlight are a common component of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. So, you could get some help from steroids and medications which could suppress psoriasis symptoms.

The expression of the blisters is called a "flare"... and they won't subside until the flare (inflammation) dissipates on its own or is helped (by suppressing the immune system) along. You can provide yourself with secondary care. My physicians recommend as warm as you can stand it foot baths with salt water up to 3 times a day, keep feet dry - warm - avoid walking on blisters. And I have a prescription for a topical steroid to put on at night.

Currently, I am also on one of the strongest available immunosupressant therapies, Remicade. My insurance pays $30k a year. I pay about $200 per treatment (every other month via IV infussion in a clinic).

Don't neglect yourselves, see a physician. You may need medication to improve your circulation (which is what I am prescribed to help keep my toes from freezing and getting lesions... a calcium channel blocker, for winter months blood pressure medication).

It's a complex issue. Best to be looked at and monitored. None of these conditions have cures, but all have some effective treatments.

- UC, Reynauds, psoriasis, chilblain Vetran
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Well I never did end up going to the doctor.  I kept my feet warm the next day after posting while applying a hydro cortisone and taking IB Profen to keep the inflammation calm.  That night and the night after I slept soundly and the blisters calmed right down.  When I went to work and had to walk around all day with shoes on i just applied some generic foot powder to keep friction down.  I spared myself the costly doctor visit believing by the time my appointment arrived my toes would have cleared up entirely.  My toes have been back to normal for weeks now and I am very conscious now of their temperature.  Lets see if I can go for a another winter and avoid their presence altogether!  If they ever do show up again, I will go straight to the doctors to make sure there is no further underlying causes.  Good luck everyone!  Take care of your feet!
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Do you think your symptoms went away because the weather got warmer?  I find that when it gets down to around 60 (high) my symptoms start acting up, but when it gets warmer, the redness goes away.  I also think it might be related to stress but not sure.
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I have the exact same syptoms of itchy, red, pea sized blisters inbetween my toes. I came down with a fever, being extremley cold to the point I couldnt sleep and had to get up and have a hot shower. Then the next night I woke up to intensley itchy feet. The following night, blisters appeared. I also had two chillblain like red marks on my hands and one blister underneath my tounge. I am 25 and have been to two doctors in the last 2 days and I have finally been diagnosed with hand, foot and mouth today! It is usually found in toddlers however in recent years becoming more common among adults. Crazy I know.
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Thank you all for the thread - after trying some of the same remedies others tried, also without success, I went the possiblity that my symptoms were psoriasis related.  I wanted specifically to target the swelling which I thought could actually be a build up of overactive skin cell growth.  It's this overactive growth that can cause an itch, and the appearance of blister-like spots that resemble what you normally think of as blister but don't contain fluid.  

The pharmacy department at my local grocery store carried a product called Psoriasin Gel
http://www.alva-amco.com/psoriasin/psoriasin_gel.html .  
The itching stopped within 5 minutes of the first application, and by the second application I could see the redness and swelling diminishing.  By day two it was as if there was never a problem. I stopped using the gel at that point.   That was about a week and a half ago and still nothing visible!  

I don't know if what I was experiencing is the same as some of you have dealt with, but if this remedy could help just one person it would make my day!  (fine print - I don't work for the company that makes it, nor do I have any medical training)
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I have the same problem and just figured out that it is chilblains and not athlete's foot because the fungicidal creams have not helped and unexpectedly, the one thing that did give me relief was doing a shoulder stand at the gym this morning. Makes sense, now that I know the issue (in part) is poor circulation. For anyone out there suffering from this try shoulder stands to relieve the symptoms. It made the itchiness and pain go away for most of the day!
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Wow, I just looked up a picture of chilblains and that is EXACTLY what my toes look like.  Amazing, I have never heard of chilblains but what I read here makes perfect sense. My feet never feel cold, but I usually am barefoot in the house and even wear flip flops and go barefoot out in the snow. (not for long, but as long as you keep moving you can do it).  Then when I wear shoes, they get hot and itchy same with under the covers at night.  How come doctors don't seem to know about Chilblains???  can you post links on this site?  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chilblains
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hi HD, I don't think it relates to low muscle tone or feeling cold.  I am your same size, but muscular and very physically active.  I'm never cold.  What concerns me about this disease is that it is a circulatory disease.  Especially to see it in young and/or physcially fit active people is disconcerting.  I look forward to discussing this with my doctor (now that I know to see my regular doc not the dermatologist)
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1706724 tn?1307769342
A good description and photo at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chilblains

Usually very painful to touch. Itch due to lower level of pain.

The remedy by ZooHome, Dec 15, 2007 06:46PM does work well.
"I have been desperate enough to pierce them with a needle an squeeze and from the larger ones lots of dark blood comes out but it's a bit different than normal blood and it feels better after and seems to heal more quickly most times. Not really suggesting that due to the risk of infection. Despite the fluid it's as was said no real sack to pierce but it does drain wen poked and squeezed."

Aseptic procedure: prevent infection at all cost by disinfecting toes and instruments before the treatment and keeping toes clean during healing time (minimum 48 hours). Always change socks and shoes daily. Shoes must have comfortable loose fit. Read more about general feet health.
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Greeting from the Southern hemisphere

I have been suffering from this condition since childhood. It not only affects my feet but also the tip of my ears and my hands in a lesser degree. In my immediate family my mother has the same condition.

The reason why am posting to this thread was to tell you that I have been chilblains free for the last 3 years and it only returned this winter.

My first reaction to this was "Dam I should have never quit smoking" (I quit in December of last year) but I don't think that was the reason.

Since their is no cure for chilblains I follow a few simple rules during winter months.

1. Keep feet warm at all cost !!!
By wearing wool socks and changing my socks regularly.

2. Keep away from any artificial heat source !!!  
This is very important and it has been mentioned before in the thread. I can not stress it enough.

3. Dont take a bath or shower
Ok maybe not very practical, but when I take a bath I do it with my feet outside the tub (sound as ridiculous as it looks) and try to avoid as much contact with the warm water as possible.

The reason why my chilblains made a repeat performance this year is because I broke rule 2. We experience a few cold days last week and I went out and got a heater. I tried to keep it away from my feet but to no avail.

While growing up my mother did not allow a heater in the house. Like they say mothers are always correct.

Luckily our winder months are short +- 3 months and relatively warm.  

My heart goes out to those that are not as fortunate !

May spring arrive early this year !!!!
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OK, now that it is starting to get colder, who here on this thread is starting to worry about the itchy red feet? I know I am!
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hi everyone,

I know that this is a pretty old thread however this link may help...

http://www.patient.co.uk/health/Pompholyx.htm
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49619 tn?1369749284
I also got the same itchy toes and it comes back every winter. I don't think I have Chillblains... It's either that or it isn't that serious. I haven't experienced any blisters, but it is always itchy no matter what. Particularly after I come back from outside and take off my shoes. I try to go barefoot with flip-flops at home most of the time and that sometimes helps... I think I'll try to wear socks to see how it goes.
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I created this post a few years ago. I wish I could edit my original post to say: itchy toe hives and NOT blisters. I've never had a blister. They were swollen pink/red lumps anywhere in size from 2-10 mm in diameter and raised about 1-2 mm. They were NOT filled with liquid like a traditional blister. The skin tissue was simply swollen (and relatively hard) and the skin taught and sometimes shiny. A hive or lump is the best description and I'm still convinced they are Chilblains.

Please read ALL the posts for perspective as many have had exactly the same symptoms/experience as me while others seem to have unrelated medical issues. Collectively, you can gain valuable insight from all of them.

gr99
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I've researched a bunch of other sites on chilblains and saw a couple that said to use aloe vera. So, for the past couple of weeks, I've been using it and it's cleared up a lot of the redness and itching, so I'm hopeful.

You might want to give some aloe vera a try, fellow red-toed ones. I also bought some good WrightSocks that seem to help cool my feet and not let them get too hot in shoes. The search for a remedy goes on...
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i have had the same problem staretd last year and lasted for five months doctor diagnosed chilblains ..returned this year but more severe than last i suffer from reynauds also but usually only in my hands seen doctor this time he thinks i possibly have p.v.d and are currently waiting for the results back
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I found a cure for my chilblain problem after 4 years of living hell every winter. Docs are useless for one. I lost so much sleep. Swollen red toes, blue spots and bumps and blisters, itching, pain when touched...it was bad. I started to think what else has the same symptoms...hemorrhoids. What fixes them, preperationH. I tried PrepH on my toes, the cream version, and they stopped itching the first night. After only a few days my toes were coming back to normal. After a week, they are normal. I used it 3 times a day on my toes. Now if I feel any hint of it coming back I use the prepH and its stops. No more lost sleep. No more irritated toes. I needlessly suffered all those years when the answer was a few bucks at the local store.

It makes sense to me. The blood vessels are obviously getting messed up, blue spot and bumps of blue. The tissue gets inflamed, red swollen. Its also itchy and painful...all like hemorrhoids!

I think the medical community needs to look at this differently. They havent been able to fix it, they dont understand it, and I dont here of then trying preperationH!

Try it people, it cant hurt. It worked a miracle for me. I am normal again!
Prepreation H cream with:
Glycerin 14.4%
Phenylephrine HCl 0.25%
Pramoxine HCl 1%
White petrolatum 15%
I bought thee generic version. There are many types so look at the ingredients.
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THANK YOU - THANK YOU - CAN'T THANK YOU ENOUGH.  Had my first decent nights sleep last night and first day I could stand it and not go crazy. I googled itchy, swollen toes and came up with this site.  I read your advice about Prep H and had some unopened gel in the med cabinet.  It was almost instant relief.  I've had this for weeks just like the picture with the red toes.  Last night it moved to the second foot.  Like many I had treated it as atheletics foot and nothing worked.  Tried some prescribed cream and it didn't work.  Tried calamine lotion and it didn't work.  I wanted to chop my feet off.  Thanks for giving this 70 year old a decent nights sleep and itching relief with a simple remedy.  By the way I live in the Lake Tahoe area of California and have for 50 years. This was the first time I experience Chilblains.  You are a life saver.

V Granny
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I thought I had a bad rash then the itching got so much worse. I have actual blisters that can be popped and liquid continually comes out. When my feet are dry they are flaky and the top layer of skin can be peeled off. The itching is absolutely maddening. Tried caladryl but it makes my feet so dry they crack and bleed. Only thing that helps me even a little is a&d ointment or sometimes neosporin. Help!!!!!
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I've posted this back to gr99, mainly because I'm not sure exactly how this forum works and they were at the top.

I'm not sure if my post will be of any help to anybody either, but I just wanted to say thanks to everybody whom has posted. The itchy toes were driving me mad..they are also red and slightly swollen. It's the itch that is mainly driving me crazy. They only started 2 or 3 days ago, but I have had them in my past, though can't remember the exact circumstances. Factors that may affect me this time are: I quit smoking 2 weeks ago, I generally have low blood pressure (though haven't been to a doctor in couple of years so may have changed), I spend a lot of my day sat down in front of a computer, I am 44, I am not overweight (if anything I'm probably a little underweight), we have had some real cold nights over the last 2 or 3 days/nights. I live in NZ and it's the middle of winter, it never gets particularly cold where I am but, it can occassionaly hit freezing (though rarely) - I realise that may be cold to some, but I lived in Ireland and Britain before this and it was definitely colder there.

I have also noticed that I have several small red blotches on my arms and back of my hands, which may or may not be related. My toes itch like crazy. Other parts of me itch a little but not in the same place consistently  except for my toes. I bought some new socks recently and have been wearing them (they are very dark blue).

At one point it actually felt like there were minute insects running around inside my socks and eventually I got so crazy with it that I sprayed a bed-bug treatment (that one isn't supposed to spray on skin) onto one of my feet and toes and weirdly enough it stopped itching almost instantly, which made me think that it was some little bug that I can't see, but started itching again a few hours later.

So since reading this post this evening, I now at least have some possible answers but I'm still not sure why the spray worked and I still feel the occassional itch. However, I will now investigate chilblains, raynauds, hand foot and mouth and bad circulation. This is more information or hope than I had several hours ago and as I can already feel the itching returning I am eager to find some more long term solution than spraying them with poison...also I'm not sure if it's the poison or the cooling affect etc

Oh dear , that was a bit of a ramble, but basically I just want to say thank you for giving me things to try...and weirdly to know that others have itchy and red toes and are actively looking for solutions, makes me feel better at least mentally.
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I HAVE THE SAME THING,IT MAKES ME CRAZY, I NOT ONLY HAVE IT ON MY TOES, BUT ON MY HANDS AT THE SAME TIME... HAVE YOU FOUND ANYTHING THAT HELPS. PLEASE IT IS DRIVING ME INSANE
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After several winters of having some of the symptoms described above (no blisters but redness, itching, burning, some discoloration) , I finally asked Google and this thread popped up.  The problem usually effects my right big toe and to a lesser extent my left big toe.  In bad winters, the tips of my pointer and middle toes can be effected too. My two outermost toes have never been effected which I find odd because my pinky toes are basically non-functioning stubs (I cannot wiggle them and have no real muscle control over them - I suspect for me they are vestigial remnants like the appendix!).  I had been treating the inflammation as a fungal infection with anti-fungal cream but I realize now it probably wasn't the anti-fungal medication but most likely the cream itself that was soothing the burning and itching.  At least I now have an idea of what I am dealing with.
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Hi again, I posted in this thread back in 2010 and have had this condition for about five years now. After trying a number of different remedies over the past several years, I think I finally found something that works - gingko biloba.

It's only been just over a week since my symptoms started this year, but then I started taking 240mg of gingko biloba daily. After a few days, the itchy redness went away and now (knock on wood) my toes are back to summer normal.

I started taking gingko biloba after reading about how it's supposed to increase circulation. Has anyone else had success with this?
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Listen up, folks, because this is a doozy: A specifically nasty type of HPV.

It causes some or all of the following:
genital warts, cellulitis, hydrentis suppurativa, chilblains, athletes foot.

ALL ARE CONNECTED WITHIN YOURSELF.
THERE IS NO CURE.

Now you know. Sorry about ruining your day.
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1987167 tn?1326659312
I think I can help you all some!

I have had the same symptoms for about 4 years now. It happens every winter, small, itchy red spots that grow larger and swell and turn shiny and are very painful to touch! When I went to the doctor I mentioned chilbain and he said there is no way my feet have got THAT cold. He finally told me it was Raynauds disease and gave me a BLOOD PRESSURE MEDICINE just want people to see that! haha It doesn't cure it but seems to help. It helps dilate the vessels helping the blood to flow more freely....I also get them on my fingers as well. I take  my medicine (metroprolol Tartate) and keep my hands and feet warm and try to avoid temp changes. It is a pain in my butt but I am glad to see I am not the only one with this problem.
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I too have the problem of blistering/itching toes in winter only.  Doctor said Chilbains.  Gave me medication to open vessels in feet.  No help.  Does help keep my toes and fingers from freezing so fast in cold weather.  My wife washed all my socks in vinegar thinking possibly the detergent was the problem.  No help.  Benadryl works.  After trying all the suggestions offered
I thought it had to be something like an allergy.  The Benadryl relieves the itching and eliminates the blisters.  As long as I take the Benadryl, no problem.  Hope this works for others..
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I have had these symptons for over 30 years. Winter time only. Relief - sticking toes in snow or ice cold water - relief but not a cure. In the 80's a doctor in Wyo. told me "in texas, we call this hoof rot". He gave me a perscription for a spray. 100% effective. I moved, used up the spray, and threw it away. I've told other doctors about this Wy. doctor jokingly making the comment about "Texas hoof rot" and the spray. Not one doctor can figure out what this spray was. It truly worked for me for years and I am still upset I did not keep that perscription bottle of spray. If anyone goes to a doctor - please ask them about "texas hoof rot" as someone, somewhere, will know what this pertains to. I remember this spray was cold, white, and dried my toes out and was in a very small container. So I know that there is help out there, just need to find it! I'm going to read up on Chilblains, no matter what - that spray worked!
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I've recently experienced this on one toe; it's excruciating!  Came to the conclusion it was chilblains as well.  I found great relief from the pain and itching by wrapping my toe in a tissue drenched with witch hazel, put a sock over it and wore it around all day like that.  I applied it anew last night and this morning when I woke up it was gone!!

Witch hazel!
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I have also been using witch hazel and getting pretty good results. It seems to calm down the itching fairly quickly.
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Im having the same problem.  This has been going on for months and now my toes are swelling and look like sausages and my toenails are going funky and they partly fall off
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Several years ago I had been to the dermatologist about this very thing. I was treated for a fungal infection and prescribed Silver Sulfadiazine. My dermatologist was spot on. This stuff worked great. A little bit goes a long way, Dried up the blisters and they didn't itch or hurt. As with all medications there are risks and things that you cannot be allergic to so ask your physician if it is right for you. Being a fungal infection, you may want to consider get new socks and shoes as not to pass the fungus. I have heard that you can put your shoes in the deep freeze to kill fungus although I have never done this. It has been years since I have been treated for this but the problem has returned. Time to see my dermatologist again. Hopefully someone gets some use out of this.  Definitely worth asking your doctor about.
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Here's my itchy toes story. I am 62 years old. Last September the end of one of my toes started itching. I had been going barefoot more frequently than usual in a chilly house in the northern US Rocky Mountains. My first reaction was to apply Lamisil, thinking it was a fungal infection. That did not help so I tried some Neosporin. No help there either. Then I put a thin slice of fresh garlic (excellent anti-bacterial and anti-fungal) on the itchy area and held it in place with a band-aid. That actually seemed to work. I say "seemed' because the problem disappeared, but, in retrospect, it might not have been a result of the garlic, but rather the additional warmth of the band-aid?  Fast forward to December. Still going barefoot but in a different location (southern CA). A few weeks ago the weather was getting cooler. The problem reappeared and started to spread a bit. I tried the garlic and band-aid trick, but it did not seem to help this time. I flew back to the midwest for the winter holidays, and while I was there I wore socks all the time in the house. The problem disappeared. Then I flew back to southern CA and resumed going barefoot in a chilly house (we have had some relatively cold weather the past week). The itchy toes problem reappeared and was spreading quickly. Itchiness, redness, swelling, no blisters (yet?), and a very slight feeling of numbness (commenter itch69 also reported this). I was uncomfortable enough to do a web search about it and ended up here.

I appreciate all the shared experiences that I have found at this discussion forum. My toes look like the chilblains pictures at Wikipedia. Here's what worked for me. One of the posts here (hda007) talked about Ibuprofen. In the past I had foot pain for years and took a small amount of Ibuprofen daily. Then I had orthopedic foot surgery to correct the problem, and last fall I started to take less Ibuprofen and a few weeks ago I stopped taking it entirely. This evening, I put on some cotton socks (as the other posts here recommended) and took a 200mg over-the-counter tablet of Ibuprofen. An hour or two later, I am in complete RELIEF and COMFORT!!! Right now I am thinking that during the time I was taking Ibuprofen for foot pain, it might have affected my immune system in some way. Yikes. Well, I'm going to experiment with weaning myself off it. In the meantime, I think I have a way of dealing with the itching, and I expect the redness to disappear in a few days. Happy....

In summary, cotton socks instead of bare feet in a chilly house, and Ibuprofen when needed. This works for me.
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Try looking into Gout, I also had blisters on my feet. they are gone now, due to I have changed my diet. Try the diet briefly and see if it helps.
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There were never any blisters in my case. The itching has disappeared using the methods I described in my previous post.
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I have always had cold hands and feet and being an avid hiker in all seasons this has caused major issues for me in the winter as I seem to have this issue in hands and feet.  I need to be very careful not to let my hands get cold in winter, mostly my fingers as once they start to get cold the pain is intense and it takes a very long time to heat back up.  No burning like in my toes but the cycle is similar - everyone else will be hiking in liner gloves and I am wearing liner gloves, heavy gloves and heat packs!  As far as my feet, last year was the first time I noticed the itching issue after a colder hike - two toes swelled, turned bright red and the itching was crazy.  I assumed it was from the long hike and iced them - didn't help.  I dealt with it and it went away when the weather turned.  This year during a very cold hike (temps ranged from -15 to -40) I could not regulate my toes well enough and they got too cold. There was no frostbite but the problem with swelling, itching and redness (almost purple) has increased significantly and the skin is very hard, tingly and when the most swollen toe flops on the floor (I say that because it is a little like a Flintstone toe with the swelling) it hurts.  So - for the hikers out there - how do you deal with this when hiking long distances (>10 - 12 miles) in the very low temps?  As a hiker I never wear cotton (hiking or not) so I know its not a moisture issue and my socks are designed for the weather and the right layering to minimize any affects on circulation - so, how do you handle the hikes to prevent this from occurring?
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I also have this problem and looked it up and figured that it was Chilblains.  I saw that they suggested taking Amolipidine for it.  I talked to my Dr. about it and she didn't know if I had Chilblains or not and kept coming up with other reasons.  She prescribed the Amolipidine for me and it seemed to work.  But this winter, it's back again, but the itch isn't as bad, but I'm getting the blisters.  I keep my house cool because of hot flashes.  I am keeping it cooler this year, so that may be why.  I try to wear socks, but they cause my blisters to hurt, so I take them off.  I am going to concentrate on keeping my feet warmer.  I'm glad that I found this because now I know that a lot of other people have it too!  Been reading the replies and getting more ideas on how to help with this problem.
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I have the same thing. I have red blistery type bumps that are sorta flat on my toes. My big toe doesn’t have the discoloration but internally it feels like someone smashed my toe with a hammer. Started out on one toe and spread to another. Toes are purple sometimes. My next two toes have the redness pain itchiness. When I pinch up the red bump there is a little white mark that appears.....my next thought was planter’s warts. I have had it now for about 4 years on and off. I am in Michigan and usually they start to appear in January and last until July. I went to two different Podiatrist and both sad they had no clue what it was. One sent me to an Infectious Disease doctor and he blamed it on nerve damage or a long term side effect from having West Nile Virus. To me it was a blow off answer instead of saying I have no idea what it is. I have Benadryl spray I use daily and it helps with the itching, swelling and pain. I also use a cream that is prescribed for my dry skin that has steroids and you can get an over the counter form of it, it is called Ammonium Lactate Cream 12% which has steroids or stearates in it. What makes me mad is that foot doctors have no clue what it is! My internist thinks it is a fungal disease but the foot doctor said there is no evidence of fungus my toe nails are very dry and brittle. I am a retired professor and did all the research over the internet to see what it could possibly be or relate to and I thought about Gout and Chilblains and even Cancer. I do not think it is any of these. I think this is an unresolved new disease that has not been discovered. Now the West Nile I had was the most severe with Meningitis and Encephalitis and I was in a coma for 15 years. I was not expected to live and was left with permanent nerve damage to my central nervous system and suffered some brain damage from the fever. They also think I contracted Lyme Disease but the test results were inconclusive. When I am stressed these do come out. I wear the same tennis shoes and there is no restriction on my shoes. I have always had healthy feet. I do take three blood pressure pills and just recently started taking a statin for cholesterol. I did notice when I take the statin they might have come out. I also use a paraffin wax bath daily for circulation and pain relief. Most of the rash from the West Nile was on my back, hands and feet. Clueless as to what it is.....
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Hi, i have the same problem and was told by family doctor that it is a Raynauds syndrome, autoimune disorder. I use epsom salt bath and after apply Calamine lotion. It calm redness and swellenes down. It doesnt  go into blisrery state.
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ymp10 might have nailed my problem - dyshidrosis
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dyshidrosis
Chillblains looked close but not quite and had only vaguely similar symptoms.
Worth a look.
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