Need help with ideas to combat whole body hives

shllnzl Posts: 1,816 ✭✭✭✭✭

My 60 year old sister started with body aches, then chills last Saturday. She also had a slight sore throat and dry cough. Sunday morning she awoke with a significant rash. She went to an urgent care medical facility where they told her she had a severe allergic reaction. They prescribed prednisone and sent her home.

(History: a couple of years ago she was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes so she has to inject insulin. She also has rheumatoid arthritis and takes immune suppressing drugs for that condition.)

Monday she was concerned enough to see her regular doctor. She got a shot and prescription cream. The rash continued to spread with intense itching. She got desperate enough to go to the emergency room last night but after two hour wait was interviewed in the hallway with no physical examination.

Obviously, the doctors are not trying to discover possible life-threatening aspects of this rash.

I suggested that she drink lots of water to help flush toxins another way. Also, if she had any surviving aloe vera plants, she should use the gel on a test patch of skin to see if itching stopped. She had already stopped the immune suppressing drugs that I suspected.

One further suggestion from me was for her to check the lot number on her insulin and try to find a vial with a different lot number as a means of eliminating possible vial contamination.

Do any of you have ideas to help her? I appreciate any insights that you may have. Thanks in advance. Picture enclosed.


  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,502 admin

    Ooooh! That looks like it would be very difficult to live with.

    Its a good idea to try to find the source of the contamination. Checking the insulin vial is a start. Maybe the batch of syringes, too?

    A diary of anything she can remember eating, drinking, touching, etc. in the couple of days leading up to the start of this would help. Any new clothes? My aunt once had a terrible rash on her legs and it turned out to be the dye in a new pair of shoes. Had she been anywhere that she might have come in contact with something new or out of the ordinary?

    But as to suggestions to assist with the itch itself, here are a few.

    Definitely drink lots of water to lower help flush histamines and/or toxins from the system. Dandelion tea would be diuretic and support the liver. Burdock for liver support. Goldenrod makes a nice tea and helps with histamine reactions (although it is more for sinus or lung reactions). Nettle leaf tea for mineral replacement and its antihistamine effects.

    Aloe is a good choice.

    An oatmeal bath with or without baking soda, added. Use really finely ground oatmeal and soak it before adding to the bathwater.

    Witch hazel is sometimes recommended, especially if they are oozing at all or developing small centres.

    Chickweed is a cooling herb and a salve would help calm the itch. Chamomile is another good one for skin inflammation. You could try making a tea with either or both and adding that to bathwater as well. Or make a tea, let it cool and use it to make cool compresses over parts of the skin. Take chamomile tea internally, too. Plantain is another one that could be used in a bath, compress or salve.

    There may be some EO preparations with things like lavender, to help calm inflamed skin, but I'm not an aromatherapist so can't comment on the different ones that could be used in a therapeutic situation like this.

    Homeopathically, something like Urtica might assist. Its a fairly common remedy and should be available at bigger health food stores or natural pharmacies.

    I hope she finds something that works soon. And the source of the issue.

    Just a thought, since she had viral-like symptoms prior to the rash, is it possible she has been exposed to measles or some other virus with skin reactions?

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,502 admin

    Viral type infections may have a longer incubation period so you might need to think back 7-10 days.

  • VermontCathy
    VermontCathy Posts: 1,911 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Whole-body hives is consistent with an allergic reaction to some kind of food or medicine taken internally. For example, taking pencillin internally when you are allegic to penicillin, and getting this type of rash.

    I am not a medical professional and certainly not a source of medical advice, but if this severe rash continues more than a few days despite treatment, it sounds like the patient is getting exposed to the allergen repeatedly. Something in the diet or medicine being taken is triggering the allergy.

    Anything you can do to identify the possible allergen and get it away from the patient would be the best treatment.

  • SuperC
    SuperC Posts: 916 ✭✭✭✭

    mix together soil /dirt from the yard and water. Make a slurry, and either spread or pour it all over the body, or roll in it to cover the body as in a mudbath. Allow for it to harden before rinsing off. Thus helps me when i suffer huge welts of seven inches across from bee stings.

    an epsom salt bath

    a baking soda paste slurry

    keep us posted