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Swollen hands

Discussion in 'General Symptoms' started by Nielk, Aug 2, 2012.

  1. Nielk

    Nielk

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    The past month or so I have developed a progressive swelling in my hands and fingers.
    They have become monstrous looking and painful. I can't open them all the way, neither can I form a fist.

    It is so bad that my knuckles don't show anymore. I went to my GP who gave me a 5 day steroid pack.
    This is my 4th day on it with no improvement in my hands. Although, I have a general feeling of well being with the steroid.

    He is also sending me to a rheumatologist for a work-up. I have a appointment next month.

    Anyone have any idea what this could be? Any advice with what could help in the meantime?
  2. BEG

    BEG Senior Member

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    Neilk, yuk. Swelling of the extremeties. Do any of your medications cause swelling? I wonder why he didn't prescribe a diuretic? It also sounds like a drug reaction. Started anything new lately?
  3. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Hi BEG,

    That was my first thought. At fist when I started having this problem, I was on a new medication - Trileptal - so I thought it might be a reaction to that. I tapered off from that and have been off for three weeks. The problem just kept increasing so I'm pretty sure it's not medication related. The only other medication I take is Zyrtec for allergies and Baclofen only on a as needed basis.
    The doctor also thought it might be some allergy and asked if I'm eating differently but I have not introduced any new food lately.
    I'm not sure why he didn't prescribe a diuretic. Maybe he doesn't think it's water retention? I think he is thinking more that it's an inflammation - hence the prescription for steroids.

    Thanks for your reply.:)
    Nielk
  4. K2 for Hope

    K2 for Hope ALways Hoping

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    Neilk, I've also noticed quite a bit of swelling in my hands this summer. I assumed it was due to both a drug change and the hot and humid weather. It comes and goes, but I have arthritis, so it is to be expected. Although, it seems to be worse this year than others.

    I started LDN in April and the Dr is hoping this will help with the inflammation, but said it could take up to 6 months. It has helped with the pain and energy levels. I am at 3 mg at night.
  5. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Thanks K2 for Hope.

    It's good that the LDN is helping you. I guess it'n not helping with the swelling though yet. Do you take anything else for the arthritis?

    Nielk
  6. Sallysblooms

    Sallysblooms P.O.T.S. now SO MUCH BETTER!

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    Are you on antibiotics?
  7. akrasia

    akrasia Senior Member

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    Hi NeilK,

    During the last couple of weeks my hands also swelled but whatever was going on was in the context of a general utacaria(hives) breakout concentrated on my extremities.

    A glance at weather.com's pollen reports showed very high levels of mold (not the black sort but grass mold), for the entire month of July in my upstate NY area.

    This precipitated a trip to the emergency room where I snagged some prednisone and hydroxyzine hcl, an antihistamine.

    I locked myself in a room with an air purifier running at its maximum, and, after a bit of research added rantadine, the generic of zantac and quercetin with bromelain. This seems to have worked and I'm down to one tab of prednisone a day, soon to be every other day. Of course, the time to watch is post pred.

    My swelling was accompanied by an infernal level of itching. It sounds as if you have been spared that, if, indeed it is the same thing.

    Also, I just noticed that HeapsReal suggested ice water. I think that's an excellent idea and ice, in the form of cold paks were very helpful to me for short term relief.



    Hope you feel better.
    BEG likes this.
  8. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    something simple worth trying, plonk them in a bucket of ice water for 20min or so, might help with inflammation and pain. may need to do it several times a day??
  9. hurtingallthetimet

    hurtingallthetimet Senior Member

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    hello nielk maybe it takes awhile for steroids to help with swelling? but good that your doctor sending you to see specialist to find out what is going on espically if it doesnt improve...alot of times anytime any new symptoms come up its said to be becuase of these illness and nothing more looked into what causing it..

    i have fluid retention so my hands stay puffy..but not as bad as yours sound..hope you feel better..have a great day
  10. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Hi Sallysbloom,

    No. No antibiotics.

    Thanks,

    Nielk
  11. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Thanks Akrasia,

    I'm sorry to hear about this really bad reaction you had. It's good though that you were able to figure out what the problem was and took care of it. (hopefully)

    I don't have itching but I am allergic to many things in the environment. I too live in NY but, in the city. I wonder if I have the same problem. I used to take Benadryl every day for my allergies but, when I was taken off Klonopin 3 months ago, they took away the Benadryl too. I take Zyrtec now. Maybe Zyrtec is not strong enough?

    I hope you feel better too,
    Nielk
  12. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Thanks heapsreal,

    I'm going to try that!
    heapsreal likes this.
  13. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Thanks hurtingallthetime.

    I agree, it is very confusing. We can't just assume everything is because of CFS. I wasn't even sure if I should post this question on this forum. I just know that there are so many knowledgeable people here that I would get some good advice.

    In addition to not knowing for sure what could be attributed to CFS, I also have many symptoms now from Klonopin withdrawal.
  14. Esperanza

    Esperanza

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    Hi Nielk,

    When I was having problems tapering my benzo, I got this too. It can be a side effect (I think I read it somewhere once when reading up about benzo tapering and w/d)

    Now that my taper is going well and I am successfully coming off the drug, this symptom has eased up. Freddd's B12 protocol has also helped me with edema (sp?).

    Since you came off your benzo c/t it could be a reaction to that and hopefully will gradually fade with time. Also maybe hot weather??

    I agree with heapsreal "plonk them in ice water"...LOL...but it helps :thumbsup:

    Love Esperanza x
    BEG likes this.
  15. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Thanks Esperanza,

    I'm really glad to hear that your taper is going well.:hug:

    I looked into it whether it could be from Benzo withdrawa and I was told from the facility where I detoxed that they haven't seen this. In addition, I have been totally off now for 3 months and this problem is getting worse. Although I can't totally count it off.

    I also noticed today that my lips are getting swollen too. This is starting to freak me out. (maybe because I'm starting to loo like a freak?)
  16. Nielk

    Nielk

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    I keep thinking that this sounds like an allergic reaction and I just realized that the only new thing that I introduced in my life two months ago is aqua therapy. I started it two months ago and do it twice a week. Could it be that I'm allergic to chlorine?
  17. Esperanza

    Esperanza

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    Hi Nielk :hug:

    Hmmm - well the lip swelling doesn't sound benzo w/d related but more like an allergic reaction.

    Chlorine brings me out in a rash but I guess it could also cause lip swelling :confused: Not sure - if all this gets any worse I would check it out with your doctor again. Could you re-try Benadryl to see if that helps?

    Love Esperanza x
  18. Nielk

    Nielk

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    Hi,

    I'm going to check with my doctor tomorrow. Normally, I would definitely take two Benadryl now to help me out but, I got direct instructions not to take Benadryl. It seems that Benadryl could be addictive. Then again, if this is a strong allergy, I don't know what else to do?
  19. hurtingallthetimet

    hurtingallthetimet Senior Member

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    nielk your one of the very knowledge people on here that give good advice : )
    you mentioned klonpin withdrawl could it be a symptom from that?
    its funny because im going through seroquel withdrawls..and it is beyond horrible...doctor fist time told me to go off cold turkey i wanted to go off becuase id gained huge amount of weight on it...and i had to go to er twice they told me they didnt know why i was so sick....probably bad stomcah bug...come to find out i read on interent and seroquel can cause severe withdrawls when stopped..when i went back to doctor he was shocked siad hed never known anyone to have withdrawls he took off...

    i was shocked he didnt know this info..so ive tried slowly getting off it for over a year now...i feel like i am dying...
    i want to start back so badly...

    how are you doing going off the klonopin if you dont mind my asking? hope that it is going good for you getting off it..withdrawls are a very hard thing to live with : (
  20. Dainty

    Dainty Senior Member

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    Lips swelling too definitely isn't a good sign. With your history of allergies, if I were you I'd investigate the possibility of this being an allergic response to something. Possibly even your Zyrtec. I became allergic to Benedryl, or more precisely I developed an allergy to diphenhydramine, which is the single active ingredient in Benedryl that makes it a potent antihistamine. There are doctors who will say it's not possible to have a histamine repsonse to an antihistamine, but quick googling of the subject shows I'm far from alone - and we're talking about a true allergy, not a side effect. My allergy specialist agrees that is indeed what has happened.

    I would also take with a grain of salt any professional advisement that "it can't possibly be ____ because we haven't seen that before". Just because 99% of people don't present the symptom as are result of a drug doens't mean you won't. I regularly find myself experiencing the documented side effects of common drugs that "less than 1%" of the population experiences from it. And I've had an allergy doctor who claimed that my extreme fatigue and 18+ hours of sleep within the 24 hours after an allergy shot "couldn't possibly" have anything to do with the allergy shots. Mysteriously, it only ever happened directly following those shots, and was worsening each time. I eventually decided that despite the doctor's protests that in her vast knowledge there was absolutely no way the symptoms could be connected with the shots, I stopped and the problem disappeared. Years later I learned from another allergy specialist that I had been experiencing a low-level, lengthy form of anaphylaxis. Three cheers for common sense over a medical degree!

    I'm not saying doctors' opinion should be completely disregarded, just that they're operating by statistics, book knowledge, and experience. And sometimes you may fall outside of all three of those. If that happens, you're the only one who can make a move to recognize the error either by obtaining a second (third, fourth?) professional opinion or by experimenting on your own with removing potential problematic things from your regieme.

    Hope you figure things out soon. :hug:
    peggy-sue and merylg like this.

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