Itch issue that has got my doctor stumped!
Around July 25th, while on tour with my band I started having itchy skin. There was no real visible rash or bumps, but certain areas of my skin would itch. The areas weren't centrally located. Legs, around my groin area (but not ON it), arms, chest, back, but mostly where clothing is tight or skin is rubbing (around my sides, arm pits, knee pits, belt line...). I thought it was fleas at first since I came in contact with many cats and dogs on tour.
My girlfriend started getting it, too. We have NOT been sexually active but we have spent a lot of time on the same furniture.
I have a lot of tattoos. I am a stickler for cleanliness and only get tattooed by certified artists in clean shops. However, I have noticed, mostly in areas where the tattoo artist has done an outline, that some lines seem raised with bumps that itch. This is occurring on tattoos I've had for 5+ years, and others that I've gotten months ago.
My doctor said it was bed bugs. My girlfriend and I sanitized the hell out of our beds, furniture and clothing weeks ago. Plus, bed bug itching generally doesn't last this long.
I went back to the doctor and she was stumped so she referred me to a dermatologist whom I have yet to get an appt with. She also prescribed me Eurax which should suppress the itch. (It hasn't come in yet.) I hope it will work because I have tried literally every creme and lotion on the market. Aveeno, Oatmeal and Shea Butter lotions, all kinds of powerful off-brand itch relief creams... I've even taken a double-dose Aveeno bath. Caladryl seems to ease the itching for a few hours, but it never lasts and gives me very dry skin. St. Ives lotion is a little relieving, but doesn't do much. I've taken hot showers and cold showers. I've used exfoliating sponges, checked my laundry detergent for any changes in chemical make-up... nothing gives!
My doctor also prescribed me Hydroxyzine, which is a generic form of something (can't remember) but it is for anxiety and nervousness as well as itch. Luckily, I have bad social anxiety so I didn't feel as if this medication was going to really screw up my demeanor. I only took one dosage, and it calmed down my itching about 95% (it was a heavenly experience because I have been itching non-stop for over a month!). However, it made me severely drowsy so I can't take it unless it's bedtime.
I looked into scabies, and a lot of the information makes sense as far as my symptoms. Scabies is contagious, worse at night, and worse in warmer areas where clothing or skin rubs. All characteristics would apply to my situation (assuming that my girlfriend got it from me). However, the marks don't really look much like scabies marks. I don't see any "burrows," however I've learned they are supposedly too small for the human eye to see. The photos I've seen of scabies are way uglier than how my skin looks. Most of the photos seem to show much more concentrated red bumps. I hardly have any red bumps. Maybe 25 total on my entire body, but more than just those bumps itch. I will itch an area of skin that is, let's say, 8 inches in diameter, and there just may be a bump somewhere in it... whether it is a result of itching or a cause of itching, neither me nor my doctor can tell.
The condition has not gotten worse but it remains consistent. I haven't passed it along to anyone in my family, and my cat and dog seem to be fine. A few friends have slept in my bed and on my couch and none of them have caught anything. We all share towels (after washing of course). There is no itching on my face or scalp, and minimal itching around my neck. Some marks have a poison ivy look, but others are small reddish bumps. The frequency of the bumps in my tattoos is what floors me the most. I have read instances of this occurring, but my doctor didn't seem too surprised by it. I figured she would assume that my tattoo work was not sanitary or professionally done considering she is very old-fashioned, but that wasn't the case.