Too Many Itches To Scratch

Some years ago, I wrote about being diagnosed with the incurable skin condition, Pityriasis Rosea.

The cause is unknown, though some experts believe it is the legacy of a previous viral condition. It does go away after a while, but then it comes back when you least expect it.

In my case, I am unlucky. It is usually always present somewhere on my body, mostly on the front of my chest, or along the line of the spine in my back. It can become red and raised, and is always terribly itchy. For years now, I have taken an antihistamine tablet at least once a day, sometimes twice. That helps to control the worst of it, as well as liberal application of steroidal creams to the affected areas.

Regular readers will also know of my susceptibility to insect bites, especially mosquitioes and horseflies. I am unusually attractive to any biting insects, and spend the summer months having to use the strongest repellent sprays available, as well as wearing an impregnated wrist band that deters insects.

The sudden rise in temperatures has hit me on both levels this week. The rash has returned on my chest and back, and has also started to appear around my ankles and feet. Walking Ollie has resulted in numerous bites and stings, especially as it has been far too warm to even think about not wearing lightweight shirts and shorts.

So I have woken up this morning with an itch raging across my back and chest. Also on both ankles, and the instep of one foot. Add to that three large itchy mosqito bites on one arm, and I am more than a little agitated. The tablets and creams do not seem to be able to cope with this double-dose of irritation coursing through my body, and I am sitting typing this trying not to rub my back against a wall as I rake my chest with the sharpest fingernail I can find.

I definitely have far too many itches to scratch today.


This almost-unseen post from 2012 explains why I often mention Statins on this blog, and also why I no longer have sufficient strength to lift so much as a paving slab. If you are prescribed Statins, make sure to have regular blood tests.


About three years ago, I had a routine blood test at my GP. He diagnosed excessively high Cholesterol, and said that I would have to immediately begin taking Statins, a drug designed to reduce the Cholesterol in my bloodstream. I read up about this drug on the Internet, and voiced my concerns to the GP, before getting the prescription. He was having none of it. If I wanted to stay in his practice, I would take the drugs he prescribed, and heed his advice, or leave, and find a new doctor.

So, I began three and a bit years of taking Simvastin, the proprietary brand of Statin. Regular blood tests were carried out at the local hospital, and I received no more information, so presumed all was well, and that the tablets were doing their job correctly. When I moved to Norfolk this year, I was readily given a repeat…

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It’s back, and on my back too.

I recently posted that the eczema ( yes, I have decided to accept the common spelling…) that had been affecting me was under control, and I was hoping that this would be the end of it. I am sorry to report that it has returned, and with a vengeance. It is now covering most of my back, and is creeping around the sides too. Luckily, I have Julie to help, so she is able to plaster the creams and ointments on it for me, sadly, to no avail. I am only able to manage temporary relief, and as soon as I get warm, or try to sleep in bed, under the duvet, it flares up once again. It consumes your every waking moment, as all you can think about is the itching.

I have done all I was asked to do by the doctor. I have bathed in the greasy emollient cream, taken the anti-allergy tablets, and slathered on the steroid ointments. All of my clothing and bedding has been re-washed, in specially purchased non-allergenic products. I have foregone use of deodorant, and any products containing aromas, or scents. Despite this, it has not only come back, it has got worse. I feel like a commander who thought that they had defeated an enemy, only to find them stronger, and attacking from another direction.

I am now at the stage where I have to consider other areas to try. Could it be the dry atmosphere, with all the cold outside, and heating on constantly? Perhaps I need to invest in a humidifier, and try to moisturise the air, as the same action with my skin does not seem to be helping. Contact with clothing exacerbates the problem, but I can hardly go around without clothes. My diet has not changed, and nothing new can be identified as a probable cause. So what next? More trips to the doctor, additional creams and tablets, eventual referral to dermatologists at the hospital. This seems to be the outlook for me.

So, why I am bothering the blogging world, with unpleasant details of my skin irritations, and frustrations with itching?

There are literally tens of millions of you out there. I know that only a tiny percentage read my blog, but as with the Lottery, you never know when your luck will change, and someone will randomly happen across this post. Like a message in a bottle, thrown into the ocean, it may find someone with a solution. You may be the person that has discovered a surefire remedy for this irritating red and itchy rash that plagues me. Perhaps you suffered also, and earlier than me, so have had more time to discover a cure. It may be a particular brand, in which case, I hope that it is available in the UK. Or it might be something natural, possibly herbal, and easily purchased.

Whatever it is, please let me know.