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Contagious Itchy Face Syndrome

I have a contagious itchy face syndrome that makes myself and the others around me itch their faces, i.e.,(nose, eyelides, ears, etc...)  I think it is related to the herpes/chicken pox virus.  I had this condition many years ago and it seemed to go away.  However, it has come back and been non-stop for the past week.

Basically, my face feels like there is something like a hair/worm underneath my skin w/ a slight burning sensation, which make me want to itch my face all the time.  However, there are no open sores visible.

What is really DISTURBING is the fact that it makes others itch that I am  talking to in social and/or business settings.  People have even commented that they seem to be allergic to me.

I don't think is Rosacea or Seborrheac(spelling?) dermatitis.

Note:  I was diagnosed w/ Genital Herpes in college.  I also have genital warts.

Please help!!!
15 Responses
242489 tn?1210500813
I'd like to, but don't really know how.  The term "contagious itchy face syndrome" is creative, but unknown to medical dermatology.  Basically, it sounds as though you have funny sensations you are unable to stop thinking about, and when other people see you rub or scratch, this makes them uncomfortable and they do the same.  I advise you to see a dermatologist, just to be sure that you don't have a skin disease like seborrhea, though it doesn't sound as though you do.  Perhaps the skin doctor can recommend some topical treatment that may help your symptoms.  If that fails, you may need to consider biofeedback, hypnosis, or some other therapy to help you overcome this behavior.

Good luck.

Dr. Rockoff
Avatar universal
In response to Itchy face syndrome,
I too have the same symptoms. I have been trying to figure out what is happening.
I have walked up to people like you have and w/o scratching myself in front of them, they start flipping at their nose or eyes and face like a swarm of "no see um`s" have invaded them. What`s up?
I wash my clothes, bed linen regularly, vacuum several times a week, Have tryed lice shampoos, lotions, have been to a GP and a dermotologist and they say it`s impossible.
Sometimes it feels like flea bites but no VISABLE signs.It can be as bad as if I had rolled around in fiberglass insulation. I can have the itching,bug jumping feeling all over but mostly on my face and lower legs. I don`t have to be at home for it to start either. I can be for the most part itch free say at the store, then I feel it start up and I`ll ntice others start to wipe their legs or swat at what they may feel as bugs on their face. I can shower and within a few minutes I get rashy all over mainly back of upper arms to lower back.This may last for about 10 minutes. a few hours later I break out in the itching/ crawling feeling and it won`t go away, it may be mild or it may get very bothersome.A few days at a time is the longest I have managed to go withou any symptoms. I`ve been reading a few message boards and have only seen a few folks with the same problem. I need and end to this bug.(New strain of flying/windborn scabies? I dunno} Any suggestions anyone?
Avatar universal
I have this feeling you descibe of being bit by little fleas.  I feel like I have been having allergies to polen or something.  I had a rash on the back of my neck for whatever reason.  It didn't itch or anything.  Don't know why it showed up.  I put hydrocortizone cream on it for two days it it cleared up.  I am always rubbing my arms and legs and under my nose because of the feeling of being bit by flees.  There is nothing there.  I thought maybe dry skin or something.  I was up and the feeling comes back.  It's not constant, but comes and goes.  Very annoying!!  If anyone knows what this is from, I'd love to know!
Avatar universal
I have been having similar symptoms for about 5 months now. Feels like tiny bugs crawling very short distances on my skin. I noticed it first in my scalp (felt kind of like someone standing behind me and poking me lightly with a feather). It's basically all over my body though. It seems to be temperature activated or perhaps it is something, like pollen perhaps, that reacts with perspiration, because I've noticed when I sweat a little, the sensation can be drastically multiplied. Otherwise, it tends to just be a bit of an annoyance. It usually does not require me to scratch with my fingernails, but rather to just lightly brush the area with my hand. I too have not gone but a few days here and there without the symptoms. Here are some things that I've noticed:
1. It seems to be worse when the weather is cool. It seems to lessen when the days and nights are very warm.
2. It tends to go away at night when I sleep in sweatpants, t-shirt, socks, and turn the air conditioner on in my bedroom.
3. Sometimes when it's gotten pretty bad in my bedroom, I've pulled my sleeping bag out of my storage and slept in my living room with little or no itching.
4. The itching tends to follow me to work and mostly affects my knees and legs while at work.

To me, all this points to something that I'm allergic to in my apartment which is getting into my clothes and bedding. I can't find anything that pinpoints it though and neither can my doctor or dermatologist. Even with the sleeping bag, after a few nights it too seems to become contaminated. Washing bedding sometimes helps for a few nights and sometimes doesn't seem to help at all.

I live in the Bay Area, California (FYI). I will be moving out of my apartment in 2 weeks and pray to God that this stuff goes away after that. I will repost if it does. Also, I'd be happy to be contacted by anyone who wants to get a group effort going to fight this thing.
Avatar universal
I'd also like to add that there are no signs of any kind - no lessions, nothing that I can see with a magnifying glass or 30x handheld microscope, no rashes, etc. It's just like I have "ghost bugs" jumping on and off my body. Even as I write this, I can feel my eye brow hairs being disturbed as if sometime is landing on them. It's definitely a very real condition. I am not stressed out so I'm confident that it's not imagined. Actually, the only thing I do see on my face with a 10x mirror are tiny white flakes or fuzzy things. They are very small and may or may not be involved.
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