could be bile salts. if yes this (1) check your liver and gallbladder function and try to support them with supplements like detoxitech (if you can tolerate msm) (2) check for a viral infection in the liver (hepatitis?) (3) check your allergies; these can cause your gallbladder to act up
Hope that helps
I would start with looking at what's been different since the itching started. First off I would look for any changes in appearance of your skin like a rash? Any other new symptoms like increased/decreased urinary output? Pain? New meds or supplements? New foods? New clothes soap or clothing? New environment? New anything that correlates with start of the itching. If nothing can be identified, see a doc and get some labs done to check liver and kidney function.
I have a friend who had this problem and it turned out that she was hyperthyroid. The only other obvious hyperthyroid symptom she had was weight loss, but it was the itching that finally sent her to the doctor. That's a miserable symptom. I hope you get relief soon.
I was interested to see you had CFS a long time, and only now the 'itching' has become evident'. I had itching as a strong feature for most of the time, but it only really got obvious when I got a little better. Before that, I was too fatigued and numbed and fogged to feel my 'itching'. So I'm curious: does your itching go together with any other changes in your long-term symptoms?
I would echo what Cloud and others have said about looking for what has changed in your environment. Particularly clothes, bedding, etc. I found it very helpful to aim to create a safe 'oasis' where I don't itch. Get complete new sets of clothes and experiment with them; are there any times or places when you don't itch, or where you itch worse? Finally, but perhaps importantly, pay attention to what you're eating and whether your itching is worse during 24-48 hours after eating certain foods. Perhaps with a more restricted diet, the itching/sensitivity will be generally less - it works like that for me, anyway...
Hope something there is helpful for you; do let us know how you get on, and I'm most interested to know how your onset may have coincided with any other change of symptoms. All the best, Mark.
All over itching can be caused by Lyme disease, it is a pretty typical symptom.
Various liver problems will also cause all over itching. There must be blood tests for these???
Hormone imbalances can also give you dreadful itching - I'm talking about female ones. I don't know about men.
Histamine intolerance will also cause this. If this is the case, then your dose of zyrtec may be too low. I saw an immunologist who prescribed TEN TIMES the dosage of antihistamine that was written as normal in the pack. The pharmacist said this is fairly typical, thought they always have to double check it.
Check your meds. Even the ones you've been taking. Reactions can happen suddenly on meds you've been on. When I was a teenager I developed severe itching from a sulpha drug I'd been on.
The best antihistamine for itching is Atarax. It's so old most docs don't know about it. I take it for interstitial cystitis; it attacks mast cells. And it costs a few cents a pill. It will make you sleepy initially. It's also used for insomnia.
Everything else I'd recommend has been said. Itching can be absolutely brutal; I find it worse than pain.
Everyone's made great comments about possible factors/contributors to itching -- I would just add a couple more: iron deficiency can often lead to overall body itching, and also...candida or some other type of systemic fungal infection.
I've been itching up a storm this past year. Got better for awhile, now is worse again...very difficult to figure it all out, but there has to be a reason or reasons.
I have developed allergy to washing powder twice in my life. So changing the brand into something more bio, liquid form of washing substance might relieve the itching and therefore the quality of life. At some point I had also to change shampoos (the long hair, washed with normal shampoos would irritate the neck and shoulders) and soaps to all bio-products. Bed bugs can be a problem too, so bringing the bed stuff to cold air might help (well there are probably no beds without bedbugs, but you could simply have a stronger reaction to them). These are of course only to relieve symptoms, the causes for allergies are many, each of them has to checked one by one. Good luck in getting better!
Firstly a note that when we talk of "allergy", normally we are not really talking about 'classic' allergic response. Since these "sensitivities" are not normally detected using conventional allergy testing, and are not normally relieved by conventional anti-histamines, most medics I've talked to have been quite resistant to accepting them as "allergies". I think it seems clear there is a different immune phenomenon involved here, which we tend to describe as "sensitivities", and I think it's best not to risk discrediting ourselves by claiming these phenomena as "allergies" when they behave in quite different ways. Instead, we should be pushing to have these phenomena explored properly - and of course it doesn't speak at all well for the conservatism of the medical practitioner and research communities that these "sensitivities" remain ambiguous and unrecognised despite overwhelming evidence of their importance.
That said, Lucy of course you may have genuine allergies! In my case, not, but washing powders were the very first sensitivities I identified and they were (and are) very strong reactions that have been confirmed by testing from Biolab.
I haven't used any kind of washing powder for nearly a decade now. I use washing balls only, and they work very well for me. The substance I'm sensitive to (I forget now what that is) is in basically every washing powder so it's my only option; anything that's been washed with washing powder makes the clothing too itchy to wear.
But I would be even more strongly concerned about biological washing powders and liquids. My initial discovery of my sensitivity to washing powders began with the discovery that where I'd had really bad problems, it was where my clothes, or other people's bedding in which I'd slept, had been washed with biological powders. One of my starkest onset events was when staying in a bed whose bedding had been washed with biological washing products.
There are huge concerns about biological washing powders and liquids. I have read a suggestion that they may act as transports, carrying toxins to the heart of the immune system where they would otherwise be unable to reach. I don't believe for a second that biological washing solutions are safe. Almost everyone I spoke to when I discovered my own sensitivity had experienced similar issues with biological washing products, or knew someone else who had.
In my assessment, biological washing products are as good a candidate as any for being at least one of the key factors in undermining immune systems and causing conditions like MCS and CFS. I'd advise anyone with ME/CFS who has immune problems, itching, and/or mold sensitivity to eliminate conventional washing products and use environmentally responsible solutions instead.
Thanks Mark, as I am still lost among proper terms to what is going on with me. First time I had reaction I was little, that time it was Ariel detergent, and now before developing itching and rashes I was using some local second cheapest brand, which I cannot even recall, but after I switched to liquid bio-marked one, I have no reaction. I agree that one must be carefull with bio-marked products too, as it does not guarantee we won't have reaction. Bio could also mean their production process is green, or the detergent is properly trapped in sewage facility filters, but it does not necesarily mean we won't have reactions to it.
Hi Lucy. Given that you have had reactions since you were young, and especially since you get rashes as well as itching, you may well have an actual allergy rather than the kind of 'sensitivity' I was talking about. If the reaction were relieved by anti-histamines, that would also imply it was a more 'conventional' allergy. If it's an allergy, then skin tests from your doctor ought to show exactly what you're allergic to.
For me, with my itching, I don't get a rash. This experience is, according to two doctors I've discussed it with, "impossible". Nevertheless, it seems to be reasonably common...and I've had it for 15 years now...
Regarding "Bio-marked products" though, it was a pretty profound shock to read your thoughts about them. Back when I was discovering my problems with biological washing powder, I remember I was rather surprised by the sort of people who were using them. Several people who were "green" or "hippy" kind of mentality were using them, as I discovered as soon as I stayed over and slept in their spare beds. I was quite surprised that they would use bio powders - but your comments about a "green production process" etc give a strong hint why...
Biological detergents are so called because they add enzymes to conventional powders. The enzymes are harvested from micro-organisms, such as bacteria adapted to live in hot springs. They are "biological" in the sense that they are components of living things. Their biological action enables them to break down proteins, starches and fats, so they clean more effectively. But of course, with that extra power also comes extra risk.
It's a relatively new technology, and notwithstanding all the testing (on animals, mostly) that has gone into its safety approval, we are all still effectively human guinea pigs regarding the long-term effects of biological detergents. I easily came across quite enough evidence from discussing biological detergents with friends to feel fairly confident that adverse reactions are widespread.
The advertising for biological detergents has tended to be very misleading. I've seen biological detergents advertised in green packaging, with things like donations to green/animal charities advertised on the pack, all clearly to imply that they are a "green" solution of some kind. But they aren't at all; I don't have any evidence to point to regarding their environmental credentials but a bit of research on environmentalist web sites should reveal a bit of info about that, and my impression is that they are basically the worst kinds of detergents from a "green" point of view.
If you aren't getting reactions to certain bio detergents, I certainly wouldn't want to lecture you not to use them from a "green" point of view. Myself, I have so many sensitivities and dietary restrictions that I've had to abandon various ethical principles one by one in order to keep going - I don't know how I'd make it if I was still vegetarian for example. But it does seem strange that you are OK with bios but not with conventional detergents - the bios typically have everything that conventional detergents do, and the enzymes as well.
Basically I would recommend washing balls though: they have improved hugely in recent years and they are a good solution for me.
It would be well worth while doing some more web research on this subject - and post back here what you find out, if you like. I seem to remember finding a site, years ago, that helped me to identify and compare all the different 'ingredients' of various detergents, so in your case it would be interesting to compare the powders you've tried and maybe you could work out exactly what you're reacting to that way.
And if you come across contrasting scientific opinions about all this, I'd personally suggest taking any of the research that was funded by Proctor & Gamble or Unilever with a pinch of salt, eh? They have a slight conflict of interest...
This post has struck a familar chord with me. I have experienced many of the things outlined in these links. I just recently started the methylation protocol by Freddd, and I am wondering if anyone knows if this can kick start another episode of the rash and lesions?
Does anyone have more information on what herbs or supplements can help with degranulation of the Mast Cells? I have had previous Mast Cell Degranulation episodes and multiple anaphylactic reactions in my history prior to and including CFS.