My dermagraphism and skin hives started when I became really stressed at work in 2005 due to some not so nice co-workers. I didn't know what I had at first so I suffered through the itching, skin hives, and giant red spots that would just appear at will. Now it is 2008 and I began to itch again with the same symptoms and of course I noticed that it is a really stressful time in my life, currently in nursing school and yes still working with the same co-workers.
My doctor ordered me the new Zyrtec, Xyzal. It sucks that nothing really works and all you can do is alleviate the pain by going to sleep because all of the medications seem to make me sleepy.
Elisa – April 27, 2008
I am 18 years old and I just found out that I have dermatographism (after suffering for about a year) when I went to see a dermatologist about my uncontrollable constant itching, skin hives, and welts. She knew right away what it was and prescribed Allegra. I have been taking it for less than a week now and it started working within the first day. I can "write" on my skin still, but I haven't had one of those awful itching skin hives attacks in days and it feels great.
For those of you who are suffering with dermatographism, try Caladryl Clear Lotion. I keep a bottle in every room of the house. It cools down the burning right away and really helps the itching to subside or at least become bearable.
JoLynda – April 27, 2008
Last year, dermographism and skin hives popped up when I was doing a report on allergies and looking around using Google. The symptoms resembled things that were happening to me, but to a milder scale. When I scratch my back, legs, or bump my lip on something the skin would swell up, burn, and itch...bad! It got to a point where I would swell up and hurt and itch so bad that I would have to lay down on something cold to numb the pain.
This disease is horrible. It freaks people out when I swell up! One time someone wrote their name on my arm and took a picture. I have not gone to any doctors because of all the things I have read online about how they do not help. I am just looking for relief; all of us that have this deserve it.
Randie – April 26, 2008
I am really hoping to find some input on my condition. At the age 19 (10 yrs. ago), I developed this horrible skin hives problem while going through a bad divorce. My skin starts burning in certain areas of my body and I always know where the skin hives are going to occur by this burning. With and without touching my skin, small clusters of scaly bumps appear along with long welts. I have noticed that this usually only happens when I have strong emotions, mainly negative.
I have been to allergists and doctors. I have been put on many different types of medicated lotions and antihistamines and nothing works. It is not an allergic reaction to anything. It comes at least 2 times a day. I cannot find any pictures that resemble what happens to my skin. Does dermographism burn? My skin burns before it welts and breaks out in skin hives.
Tiara – April 26, 2008
Mine all started when I was at work. I work for Thomas' English Muffin and I am an oven attendant. My work environment is very hot, humid, and there is a lot of flour dust flying around all the time. I thought I was allergic to the dry ingredients at my job. I had been swelling, breaking out in a skin hives rash galore, itching lips with swelling, and feet so swollen I could not walk.
One day at work, my fingers had swollen so bad I had no other choice but to leave and call the allergist and told her that I needed to come now. I told her what was happening and she said to come now and she would see me. Well, much to her surprise, when she saw my hands, she was shocked as to how swollen they actually were.
Now at this time I was not diagnosed with skin hives or Dermatographism. The doctor talked to me and asked me a number of questions, ran a tongue depressor down my back, and then diagnosed me with Dermatographism. I was scared to death and did not know what it was or how I got it. She stated I have had this all my life and would continue to have it the rest of my life. She promised that although she could not make me better, she could make me more comfortable than I was, but as soon as I left there I was to go to the ER and have my wedding band cut off so I would not loose my finger. I could not straighten my fingers because they were so swollen.
The doctor asked me how long I had been having these skin hives symptoms. I stated about 2 years but no one could seem to figure out what it was. I was tired of being on prednisone to relieve the hives and so I decided to see an allergist. She said she I have the most severe case of Dermatographism she has ever seen.
Let me tell you I am taking 3 medications a day. I take Zantac 150 mg twice a day and in the evening I take Xzyal 5mg and Singulair 10mg. This is suppose to relieve the symptoms some, but I can tell you I still have episodes that flair up when I cannot even walk because my ankles and feet swell so bad. I still get hives on my back and arms almost everyday.
I work 5 days a week and have two days in a row off and when I return to work the next day I start to have problems with my feet swelling and itching and hiving up. I called the doctor and asked for a pain killer, but to my surprise, no pain killers can be prescribed stronger than extra strength Tylenol, about every four hours. If painkillers are prescribed they will make the hives worse.
So, I have tried to find all the information about this skin disease that I can. I have read that it is not life threatening and therefore I am not scared anymore, just tired of the hives and itching and swelling it causes. Being stressed out causes it. Another name the allergist gave me is Urticaria. Like I say, it is very annoying to me. It is hard to do things when you have hives all over your body and people ask what is wrong with you - why you breaking out? I do not want to go into details with everyone I come across that ask questions, so I just do not do much anymore. I try to not let it bother me but it does. Sometimes I find myself crying asking myself why me. Then I stop and think and stop crying because it is not going to make it better. In fact crying it is going to make it worse.
It really seems to be worse now than before. I do not know why, but hopefully it will subside and go away. When this all started with the allergists, she did every test she could think of and she did not stop until she found a diagnosis. I can give her credit for that.
Thanks for listening to me.
Kathy – April 21, 2008