For the past few months, the skin on the thumb and index fingers of both hands has been drying and peeling, with painful cracking occurring. The skin keeps callousing and sloughing off. I have tried petroleum jelly, hand creams, shea butter and pure lanolin. I've seen a GP who suggested "contact dermatitis" and a dematologist and been given prescriptions for Protopic Ointment 0.1%, Dovonex 0.005%, Lac-Hydrin 12%, Fluocinonide Cream 0.05%, but nothing seems to help. There was no evidence of any fungus. This problem started with cracking fingertips last winter, which I attributed to dry weather and cold conditions - but it has continued for 10 months. The skin will dry and peel off, revealing new skin, which almost immediately begins to dry and callous. I am a very healthy individual, do not work with chemicals, wear rubber gloves when I have my hands in water for extended periods. I have taken a number of herbal and vitamin supplements for years, but have not started taking anything new which might be having an adverse effect. I suggested to the dematologist that they may want to do a blood test for strep or a virus, but was told this is just a form of severe dematitis. I was given the first cream treatment in July - nothing has made a significant improvement. When I start to use a cream, there will be a mild improvement, but then the problem seems to come back again. The skin on the fingertips will become so hard and dry that it literally splits open - very painful and aggravating. The only other place I noticed this was on my right big toe. What is going on here? Do I see yet another dematologist?
The following user gives a hug of support to NYLady:
you might have a minor form of eczema, try using noxzema face wash on your dry skin patches, i have eczema pacthes on my face and fingers and i used this stuff on it and it was gone in less then 24 hours!
ive had this for over a year now and have tried a bunch of other topical crap that my derm gave me but nothing worked this good until i tried this today.
[This message has been edited by j0hnny (edited 10-21-2002).]
My husband had something similiar on the palms of his hands. The skin was constantly peeling and every doctor just said it was dermatitis or eczema. It went on for about 2 years and nothing seemed to help. Finally a new doctor said he thought it was actually an infection and put him on an antibiotic. He has had to take the antibiotic for over a month but it has cured him. Maybe you should ask another doctor. It took several doctors before we got results. Also I had a really bad flare up from eczema on my neck a few years back (I had never had a flare up before and it really freaked me out). My doctor put me on pills for that to get it under control along with some topical creams. I would definitely see another doctor to find out if they is anything you can take since this is not going away.
Jojoba oil is good for some persons suffering from cases of excema. It is also good for mild skin infections because most bacterium cannot survive in jojoba oil. In either case, I believe your skin will benefit from daily applications of jojoba oil - it can be applied many times during the day and especially at night before bed.
I know what you're going through, mine do the same thing. Right now they are doing pretty well. I've been using Cetaphil cream w/ gloves @ night and reapplied frequently during the day. When I start to get the tiniest crack I put on an antibiotic bandaid. I have no idea if it will work long term. I have tried dozens of prescriptions w/o relief. I've tried a balm that Marti suggested (while I really like it for my feet, elbows, it didn't help the problem on my hands)as well as jojoba, and dozens of creams. One thing that did help was Zim's Crack Creme...until I developed a sensitivity to it after a couple of weeks. If you try it I would recommend the "creamy daytime formula"
It can be really hard to trace the source of contact dermatitis. I kept a log for a few weeks with everything that my hands were exposed to and noticed that I flared up when I used a certain shampoo. I switched to a more natural line and it has helped a little.
Good luck! If you find anything that helps, please share!
I had this for as long as I can remember. In my case it was not allergy/eczema/a vitamin deficiency.
Because no treatment for those worked.
What did work, and i have found it by chance, was figs.
Dried figs to be precise.Eating 200 grams of these cured my skin peeling in about 2 days.
Whenever I notice it recurring, i take a new dose and everything goes back to normal.