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Gloves for icy hands with dermographism

Discussion in 'Skeleton, Skin, Muscles, Hair, Teeth, and Nails' started by Calathea, Apr 29, 2012.

  1. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    For whatever reason, possibly Raynaud's, I get problems with icy hands and feet (and sometimes nose!). I also have dermographism, a skin condition which causes my skin to come up in welts if it's scratched, if I wear certain fabrics such as wool, or if I wear something too constrictive. I've tried those tubular joint supports when I was having problems with joint pain and they just made my skin red and horrendously itchy, although when I was having surgery a month ago, I was fine with the compression stockings they put on me.

    I'm looking into fingerless gloves for keeping my hands warm. I've tried standard acrylic ones and I couldn't wear them, too itchy. I also tried a fairly long pair of cotton ones, this was for when I was getting RSI pain and it was so that I could put ointments on my hands/forearm and then cover them up, but again they got itchy. Any idea what sort of gloves might work? Thinsulate? Those fancy cotton ones with a bit of silver woven into them? It'll be a nuisance having to take them off every time I go to the loo, so I don't want anything that's too difficult to peel off.

    I'm in the UK, and I'm 4'11 so I have rather small hands. Being vegan, I won't use silk, and I couldn't tolerate wool even if I wanted to.
  2. Merry

    Merry Senior Member

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    Hi, Calathea. I cut the fingertips off an old pair of fleece (Polartec?) gloves to use when I work at the computer or hold a book. The gloves are loose; I pull them off and on many times a day. They are not itchy. But I don't suffer from dermographism as you do. Best of luck.
  3. nanonug

    nanonug Senior Member

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    Two things come immediately to mind: hypothyroidism and some form of histamine overload. Addressing the underlying issues would probably lessen the need for gloves.
  4. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    I've been tested repeatedly for hypothyroidism, and the dermatologist who diagnosed the dermographism has already put me on anti-histamines.
  5. nanonug

    nanonug Senior Member

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    Do you know what your TSH level is?

    Is it working?
  6. caledonia

    caledonia

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    My sister has Raynaud's and likes the Far Infrared Raynaud's gloves. I don't know about the itching problem though.
  7. Merry

    Merry Senior Member

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    Wool gloves with a lighter pair of cotton gloves underneath? Is angora itchy? Alpaca? Bamboo? You, I'm sure, know more about textiles than I do.
  8. SOC

    SOC Moderator and Senior Member

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    Bamboo can have a very silky feeling, so it might work. Maybe you can use the least itchy gloves and take extra antihistamine when you need to wear gloves...? Or maybe a topical anti-itch cream?

    This sounds like a good issue to bring up with your dermatologist.
  9. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    Alapaca I think is classified as hair not wool and it is warm (I have an Alapaca scarf).

    You may also want to consider hemp.

    I hope you've tried to get mast cell disorders eg mastocytosis ruled out seeing your skin welts up to touch.

    I can say from my own personal experience with Raynauds that things like gloves didnt help me.. I needed an outside heat source to warm up my hands. No matter how many coverings on my hands.. they couldnt self warm once affected.

    The trick was in warming them up first with outside heat source eg soaking in warm water ..then putting the gloves on.. (same with my feet).
  10. hixxy

    hixxy Woof woof

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    I don't think this is necessarily Reynauds. I get this as well. It comes and goes. I remember a few years ago when I lived in a colder climate my hands felt like they would shatter if I bumped them on something.

    I use cotton gloves quite regularly.
  11. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    As I said, I'm vegan. I don't wear animal fibres, so I am not going to wear alpaca, wool, silk, angora, cashmere or anything else in that area. We're looking at cotton, synthetics, or possibly bamboo, although I don't find that bamboo makes a very good fabric (nice for towels, though). Right now I can't afford to buy any kind of gloves, to be honest, this is more for when I can. Having chatted to the Raynaud's Association, I may give the cotton gloves/socks with silver in them a try once I can afford it. I'm also looking thoughtfully at Thinsulate fingerless gloves, since they are a lot cheaper and I've a feeling I may be OK with smooth fleece next to my skin. I should probably try to find socks which aren't elasticated around the ankles, I've been told they exist somewhere.

    I didn't get ongoing treatment with the dermatologist, it was a one-off appointment years ago. I'm thinking of asking for referral again, mainly because I'm concerned about all the small light brown lesions I have on my skin. My GP peered at one and said it looked like a skin tag, but I'm not convinced. I also have hundreds of tiny skin tags over my neck, and spreading to my upper torso, but the dermatologist said that was benign and nothing could be done about it.
  12. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    Mast cell disorders - no, I haven't had them ruled out, and I am now going to request that they are investigated. Does anyone know where to start with this? Dermatologist, I was thinking? Apparently it's rare enough that it's hard to get diagnosed, plenty of doctors haven't heard of it.
  13. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    sorry. I know vegans who do wear animal things as long as harming animals isnt at all involved and hence why I said what i did, I didnt realise you dont wear like animal hair.

    Ive had a few skin tags due to having PCOS but they always have been of my normal skin colour.

    That's how mastocytosis may occur.. if one has mastocytosis lesions they can be biopsied to find out if it is what is causing them..

    I dont know thou if the spots can be like skin tags (thou they can welt up).
    I suggest you check out various masto pics as it can appear in different ways
    http://www.aafp.org/afp/1999/0601/p3047.html
    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001466.htm has various pics of masto on it. I suspect that there is a few at this site which may have it.
    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/imagepages/2485.htm

    Seeing you have MCS I really suggest to avoid synthetics.
    ................
    edit.. additional info. I just found something so maybe it is causing your "skin tags" .. mastocytosis (urticaria pigmentosa is one form of it) can cause papules and nodules.

    You really need to go back to your dermatologist as if it is this, mastocytosis "can" be life threatening (it kills quite a few before its diagnosed, most GPs dont know this illness).

    Not what you got below but it seems masto nodules can get quite large
  14. Merry

    Merry Senior Member

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    Pardon me, but you did indicate in your first post that you had tried wool. I did hesitate to mention Polartec fleece, because I wasn't sure if you were willing to wear synthetics.
  15. Calathea

    Calathea Darkness therapy

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    Ah, you're thinking of dietary vegans. Most vegans are ethical vegans and as such don't use any animal products (and I'm afraid it's a myth that those textiles don't cause harm to the animals, but you can look that up easily), although relatively new vegans will often use up old woollen sweaters etc. and then simply switch to another fabric when they need new ones.

    I haven't been diagnosed with MCS. I have rather fussy skin, and I don't like lots of chemical smells, but that's fairly usual for ME. I mainly avoid wearing synthetics next to the skin because I find that cotton breathes far better, but I do have acrylic sweaters and a fleece which is presumably polyester or something along those lines. My scarves are all acrylic, and I think my winter gloves are polyester or something, although I don't wear those for as long at a time as I would indoor gloves.

    So the plan of action is get to dermatologist and ask for the lesions to be biopsied? Considering that both of the conditions I was diagnosed with last time I saw a dermatologist have totally failed to respond to treatment, that alone should be enough reason to ask for a referral. Also I now randomly have a patch of atopic eczema on one hand, that's new, though probably not exciting enough for referral.

    ETA: I've already consulted a dermatologist about the skin tags, she said it wasn't anything interesting. Not long ago I realised that I have something like twelve different things going on with my skin, which does seem a lot. I can't remember what the GP said when I mentioned it, I don't think she thought it was much, but by now I do want to get it looked into.
  16. SaraM

    SaraM Senior Member

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    Dhea is the only thing that helps me.

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