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OMG!!! Ear piercing = MAJOR relapse???

Discussion in 'Post-Exertional Malaise, Fatigue, and Crashes' started by Boule de feu, Oct 7, 2012.

  1. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    Is it possible that I am reacting to having one ear pierced?
    I am so sick now. It feels like I have been poisoned. :-(
    Have you had a similar experience?
  2. SOC

    SOC Back to work (easy, part-time work)

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    Sorry to hear you're feeling bad. :hug: I had both my ears re-pierced a few months ago without problems, but I admit that I waited until I was feeling pretty good before I was willing to try it because I wondered about infection and healing issues.

    I wouldn't think one piercing should make you feel sick, but this illness is so weird that it's not entirely surprising, either. Maybe it's an immune over-reaction...? What symptoms are you having that are making you feel "poisoned"?
  3. Valentijn

    Valentijn Activity Level: 3

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    Maybe you're reacting to the metal? No sign of infection?
  4. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    It started four days after I had it done. I felt miserable and had diarrhea. That night, the nausea got so bad I almost ran to the ER. It felt like I had an extreme bout of the flu. Since then, my cheeks have been flushed. I feel hot but no fever. I get the chills and night sweats. It has been two weeks and the nausea is still awful. It seems that my body can't snap out of it.

    I was under extreme stress when I got it done. I was not feeling well.
  5. SOC

    SOC Back to work (easy, part-time work)

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    Golly, that is bad! I can't imagine it's related to the ear piercing. Maybe you picked up a bug while you were out? There are some nasty stomach viruses running around. Maybe there's one in your area?

    PS Have you talked to your GP? Maybe you can get a med for the nausea.
  6. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    I believe i am allergic to nickel. My ears start peeling and they are very itchy when i wear the wrong jewelry. However, the lady re-assured me that the earrings were made of surgical steel. At the beginning, I had weird symptoms. My cheeks were red and inflamed. They felt numbed. This comes back often during the day but does go away if I lie down and rest for a while. Otherwise, nothing out of the ordinary, except some clear lymph showing that it's healing well. Still itchy.
  7. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    I was so sick that night. Could not stay up because of the severe migraine-like headaches (making effort to throw up) and could not rest my head since it would trigger the nausea more. I finally took some fiorinal which helped a lot. I was able to sleep two hours.

    I have been waking up every night (around 3 AM) with the same nausea. My head is throbbing.

    I am seeing my GP this week but I doubt he will think it's the piercing that caused this. Like you said, I probably caught a bug or it's a major relapse. I do have domperidone for the nausea. I will start them tomorrow when I get back home.
  8. madietodd

    madietodd Senior Member

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    I can't wear anything but gold posts. Everything else makes my earlobes itchy right away.

    Madie
  9. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    From Wikipedia:

    Surgical stainless steel is a specific type of stainless steel, used in medical applications, which includes alloying elements of: chromium, nickel and molybdenum.

    It contains some nickel.

    Direct nickel allergy is unlikely, but we can react to nickel combining with our own proteins. However its also possible the nickel causes some type of chemical intolerance.
    August59 likes this.
  10. ixchelkali

    ixchelkali Senior Member

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    I'm sorry to hear you're having such a bad flare.

    The problem is that there are so many things than can cause a flare it's often impossible to identify the trigger. You may have been exposed to a bug and your wonky immune system has gone into overdrive. Or maybe it's that stress you mentioned, since stress can be a trigger. Or maybe it was the ear piercing. Who knows? We tend to think "post hoc, ergo propter hoc" (after this, therefore because of this), but tain't necessarily so.

    Take care and rest. I hope you recover quickly. And I hope your earrings look fabulous.
    SOC likes this.
  11. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    Thank you for this, Alex.
    My piercer did tell me that there was some nickel in it, but it was not enough to trigger a reaction. I might not be allergic to it but can't tolerate it. I do not have the peeling sign and the discoloration I have usually. I guess the worst thing that could happen is having my body reject it. I wonder how much energy that would take? Could a little piercing trigger a really bad autoimmune reaction?
  12. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    Same here. Do you get the blackening as well around your piercing?
  13. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    LOL I hope I will be able to wear some after this.

    When I got sick with ME, I started writing down how I felt on a calendar. At the beginning my calendar had more than 20 smiley faces per month. As the months went by, I had less and less good days. Now, I have none. I can't help it but feel that I am going into a "second phase" where my not so good days are now being replaced by really really bad days. I hope I make sense and you can follow my thought. It's hard to explain.

    How do we know if our condition is worsening? I'm afraid that if I start charting my progress again, I will have to face some bad news. My GP said my condition is worsening. How can he tell?
  14. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    From Wikipedia:

    Allergic reactions, when they occur, are rarely due to the stainless steel but from other factors (most commonly from mechanical irritation or harsh cleaning products). Allergic reactions typically include itching, redness, and swelling, with a discharge of clear fluid that is not lymph. The element in stainless steel that causes allergic reactions in some people is nickel. Polishing the jewelry to a mirror like luster results in a protective layer of chromium oxide which reduces the migration of the Nickel content into the tissue.
    alex3619 likes this.
  15. SOC

    SOC Back to work (easy, part-time work)

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    Your pattern sounds a lot like mine. I went through several years of feeling okay some of the time followed by 3-4 years of feeling rotten virtually every day. After a number of treatments, I now feel good essentially every day. I still have problems with energy, but I feel good -- no pain, fatigue, etc. PM me if you want to discuss.
  16. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    How long did it take before you got better?
  17. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    There is one condition that describes what I am experiencing right now. It's called: Systemic nickel allergy syndrome (SNAS).
    I don't know how legit this is... However, they mention CFS. They also mention that many who have SNAS are also lactose intolerant, which I am.
  18. SOC

    SOC Back to work (easy, part-time work)

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    A bit more than 2 and a half years of aggressive treatment and lots of rest. That took me from essentially bedbound to working part time at a very easy, sympathetic job.
  19. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    sounds like you'd best take it out of your ear if you havent already done so... if its the cause of your worsening state and you allow it to continue..worsening ME/CFS can be very hard to fix

    ME is easy to see if one is worsening or not if one keeps good records for a while of activity levels, amount of symptoms you have and also rate each symptom (I rate mine out of 10).

    I cant thou see how a doctor can tell if someone if worsening or not unless you have obvious symptoms showing.
  20. Boule de feu

    Boule de feu Senior Member

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    You probably explained somewhere what you did to get better. Would you mind sharing your treatment with me?

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