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Shingles???? Hmmm
subieshannon posted:
Needing some advice... My 16 year old daughter had a virus about 10 weeks ago. After the symptoms subsided she developed a rash on her right upper arm. We saw a doc who treated with an antifungal for 2 weeks. It was no better. We saw the doc again who suggested hydrocortisone cream, no better after 2 weeks. Saw a different doc and was diagnosed with shingles. Treated with antiviral for 7 days. The rash has no spread from her chest (doesn't cross the midline) to her pointer finger tip. 10 weeks and no better. Very itchy, no leakage, pain like pin pricks. Any ideas on rashes that might mimic shingles??? She is suffering and embarrassed. Waiting on a dermatologist appointment!
atti_editor responded:
Hi subieshannon,

I am so sorry that your daughter is suffering with this. I think that it is a great idea to make an appointment with a dermatologist as he/she is best equipped to determine what is causing her rash. Here is a slideshow about shingles that offers some information on other things that mimic its symptoms. This slideshow focuses on the differences between shingles and rashes that mimic it and would be another good one to look through.

The first link says that shingles usually scabs over in 7-10 days and blisters disappear in 2-4 weeks, so 10 weeks is a very long time if this is shingles. When is your daughter's appointment? Please let us know how she is doing!

Best wishes,
layzboy075 responded:
I have suffered with a very similar thing. Mine is from microscopic thorns that got on me from the swimming pool. They take months to come out and can cause contact irritation dermatitis. The areas where they were pushed in on my forearms and upper arms have a slight change of color to the skin. I think they are spreading around via my fingers and nails since I've pulled hundreds from them. My skin around my fingers has felt either sore, dry, or cracked or peels up in little strips. I've had them poking out of the very corner skin at the corner of the nail tip. I have even gotten them around the edge of my left nostril and chin and lips, most often when I have touched there. Thats how I learned what they were. I had to buy my own microscope, see it for myself, then identify them, then narrow down how I got them. My doctors know little about these, so I get my answers from researching AMA Arch Dermatol documents and studying research from the leading universities as well as finding others with the same symptoms. I really hope that she has something else, but the long duration of symptoms and lack of answers seems familiar.

Here's how I CAN help. No matter what it is:
Don't touch it. We are not as clean as we think we are when viewed through a microscope.
Do not bite your nails or chew at the skin around them. It sounds like you have noticed a connection between the rash on the arm, and later the finger tip.
Physical problems can have an affect on mental health. Remain calm, seek solutions. Your state of mind will affect how you are treated by the medical community and can affect your physical health as well.
Lastly, if she is embarrassed and suffering, stop at nothing until the problem is resolved. For 14 years I have suffered from embarrassment and pain from sores only to find I could have avoided it all.
If you find your cause or solution, please post that too even though it's hard to revisit these kinds of problems once they are resolved, you may be able to help someone.

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