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I was wondering if anyone has solid advice on how to help my condition diagnosed as Fingertip Eczema (or something that worked for yourself):

My problem first started in November 2011, almost 100% likely due to using harsh chemicals (washing my hands, alcohol gel, and sanitary wipes to desensitize equipment), etc. in the hospital during my last semester as a Student Nurse.  I had it until the end of December 2011 (I had to take a high tapered dose of Prednisone over 17 days (up to 60mg per day!) to cure my fingers; topical steroids had little to no effect.)

About me: I am a 27 year-old male with no other medical issues.  I have been in ideal health my whole life and WAS as active as anyone can be with many outdoor activities/hobbies until this occurred. 

I again had the same condition developed on roughly April 2nd or 3rd this year and its still current (through June 13th).  I started using Cetaphil moisturizer immediately!! I went to see a dermatologist in Mid-May and was just told it is Fingertip Eczema.  I was only told to keep moisturizing my fingertips and hands.  I have been wearing special gloves to bed every night which moisturize my hands, and been applying the prescribed moisturizer (Cerave) several times daily to no avail whatsoever.  It hasn't worked a bit: all 10 of my fingertips (mostly the upper potion of the fingers) are still stuck in the cycle of cracking, peeling then redness + swelling and repeat.  Part of my palms are effected but not too bad.  I also do whatever it takes to keep my hands dry at all times (taped rubber gloves in the shower!).   

My S/S in order of appearance: cracking, peeling, redness, swelling/inflammation, hypersensitivity/pain due to loosing SEVERAL layers of skin.

THERE IS NO ITCHING or BLEEDING.

As of Today: I'm including fish oil and black currant seed oil in my diet.
Currently I take several multivitamin and vitamin E capsules daily. 

I would be grateful for any suggestions so I can move closer to the goal of healing my hands and resuming activities that I enjoy, including starting my career as an RN.   Thanks for reading,

Mauidream

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You should go to the dermatologist. I have had exzema since I was born because my mom had a dry birth. I have eczema in my scalp tho, but there is this steroid cream stuff that the dermatologist gives out maybe that would work but you best bet is to go there.
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I went to dermatology last month, and was told to keep moisturizing my hands and discontinue the steroid ointment (and thats it). I have used steroid ointment in the past (Clobetasol the spelling is probably wrong) and other prescribed steroid creams with no effect.  The condition remains unchanged with continuous usage of moisturizers and/or steroid ointments- my skin keeps peeling off, so I painted my fingertips with a product called new skin today (kind of like a liquid band-aid). I hope that may prevent the peeling.

Thanks for your feedback.
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I too have had this condition for about 5 yrs. It comes and goes and oddly mine is only on my thumbs. I put up with it for 4 yrs because it always seemed to disappear as sudden as it appears but it stays about 3 mos at a time. My GP gave me an ointment that minimally helped (along with moisurizers) I finally went to a dermatologist and he prescribed two ointments that I switch ever other week so the body doesn't get used to the same thing all the time. One is Protopic 0.1% ointment and the other is Halobetasol 0.5% ointment 50 GM (It is expensive, over $300 if you don't have insurance). I put the ointment on at night only and wear the cotton gloves over it to keep the ointment in place. I use Bert's Bees Lemon Butter cuticle cream during the day anytime I think of it. It has helped before with the cracking part and is a great product. I am optimistic this will do the trick. It is already better after a week using the Protopic. The peeling has slowed down considerably. I used to put bandaids over my thumbs during the day with the Burt's Bees stuff on my thumbs and that helped too but now I don't I try and avoid harsh chemicals as you have but sometimes life just means you have to get your hands dirty and wash them good. I hope this helps you I am sympathetic to your problem. (I have in the past even used an emory board to file the skin flaking down, that is desperate but it was so sharp when it would be dry it would pick my clothes, bedsheets etc.) Good luck.
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I also have this issue and have tried a few prescribed medications from doctors with not much success. Over the past four years I have managed this issue very well by keeping my hands clean with washing them throughout the day with Dove soap and I keep my hands very moisturized with hand lotion. Gold bond has a lotion that I like the best.
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I'm on mobile, so I'm going to keep this short. I've had this same problem for 3 years now. I couldn't even function without pain. Buttoning, zipping, bathing, showering, chores, etc etc. Recently my husband went to his Dr for a bothersome spot on his finger. They gave him hydrocortisone 2.5% cream. For giggles he told me to try it. I had been on 6 months of lamisil by mouth because my Dr thought it may have been fungal. It didn't touch it. Upon his request, I tried the cream. It's been only 3 days. I can do all of the above mentioned tasks with no pain. Granted, I still take care to wear gloves while doing chores and what not and use moisturizer geared toward severely dry skin. See if you can get your hands on some of the cream. 3 days and I've gotten my life back. Best of luck. I wouldn't wish this ailment on my worst enemy.

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I am in exactly the same boat, but not as severe a problem. Only my index finger tips and thumbs are involved. I'm a retired M.D. and never had the problem before, even though, as a surgeon, I scrubbed several times every day. I had considerable relief ( not cure ) using Fluocinonide cream .05% bid, and then using vaseline and latex gloves over night. It cleared up for a few weeks, but it's recurring. I'm seeing my dermatologist next week. If I hear of  something new, I'd be pleased to share the information with you. Keep them dry, and good luck.

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I'm happy to say that my issue is now 100% resolved. After countless failed steroids and methods/remedies from NP's and MD's at Kaiser I used what I thought was my grandma's anti-fungal cream (I was desperate not knowing if what I had was fungal). It turns out what I used was a high concentration of corticosteroid cream (Triamcinolone Acetonide Cream, USP 0.5%. After suffering with my condition for so long it was amazing to see my condition improve 80-90% within 3 days and completely after about 3 weeks. Know I understand that every medication works differently on every individual but I would strongly recommend this cream and would suggest asking your dermatologist for it. I can't believe the amount of chance that was involved, for me it was a miracle. It's one of the most amazing things to think if I hadn't used that cream how much longer I may have suffered with the condition, good luck don't hesitate to let me know how things resolve with you.

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I have exactly the same type of eczema as you do, and I understand perfectly how difficult it can be...I'm afraid my response won't be that helpful, but I will tell you what I know after living with this condition for 40 years: I don't believe for a second that there is a 'cure', because I have tried it all. I don't 'think' it is diet related, though I did have a period of remission about 6 or 7 yrs ago, that lasted about a year, and during that time I was periodically on the Atkins diet, to one degree or the other. Prednisone worked once, for a while, but I don't think I'll ever take it again because the side effects were hell. Don't bother telling people about it, because they all have an 'answer', and there isn't one. Some people get very stubborn about having you use their 'cure', and lots of times it makes it worse. I put 'Bag Balm' (a salve used on mare's udders) on my hands once, and the ill effects lasted for 2 months. I use Oil of Olay bar soap in the shower (the original) and that seems to be the least irritating soap I have found. DO NOT wear latex gloves. DO WEAR Nitrile gloves, and if your hands are bad, wear them all the time. You may get some looks, but it is worth it...A doctor in Germany gave me the most helpful advice ever, which is Occlusive dressing (gloves or something else that does NOT breathe. That will be your saving grace. Wear them to bed if you are really desperate to get things turned around. I also will wrap individual fingers in Saran wrap, and put scotch tape around them to hold them in a pinch. Using STRONG cortisone (Rx) under your gloves will do the most good. Only perscription strength is at all useful. When you DO take your Nitrile gloves off, rinse your hands in cool clear water and Immediately put on the cort. cream, or plain vaseline. Don't let them dry out without putting the cream on right away or you will undo all the good you have done by wearing the damn gloves! Obviously, ANY cleaners, alcohol, etc. are major triggers. Never use lotion with fragrance. Double glove if you are using or are going to be exposed to a trigger. I use Nitrile medical gloves, with Nitrile household gloves over top if I have to use bleach etc. Even the fumes will give you a reaction. Another trigger (a bad one) is Bounce dryer sheets, scented OR unscented. Just tossing one in the dryer quickly will make you pay for it. The worst trigger ever is amniotic fluid (We are in the Vet end of the medical profession). This may seem like mostly bad news, but I really hope it helps. The Nitrile gloves are a lifesaver, if used to keep Everything off your hands, INCLUDING air, as I have said. I am not familiar with these types of message boards, but if you do read this, post back and let me know. Good Luck to you...these tips will make it bearable! PS: If you garden, make sure you keep the Nitrile gloves on...the dirt will work it's way through gardening gloves, and will set you back. Sincerely, "I'mUsedTo IT"

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I also have finger eczema for about 5 years now. but it is confined to one finger only at a time. it disappears and reappears. I haven't taken any medicine so far. last year it became severe. I attended a 5 day yoga course (not to cure it..I enjoy doing yoga) and stayed at the ashram. by the end of 3rd day it completely disappeared. I can only guess that it was either cured by the Pranayama or (May be) by the oil found on the body of the new born calf (cow baby) whom I was touching with my hand and fingers (having eczema) 3-4 times a day. everytime I touched hime, so much oil used to get on my hand that I had to wash it with soap.
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Not sure if my advise will help but let me share my experience. So, I got these fingertip cracks a couple of years back. I went to a dermatologist 3 months back, he prescribed some moisturizer and topical steroid creams. They work for a while but the problem comes back. I can give you some advice from my experience: -

--Try not to worry too much about it. It caused by allergens and your immune system's response to it. If you change cities some day, and hence stop exposure to the allergen, the reaction will most likely go away.
--Try the neutrogena Hand cream. Helped me alot.
--Wear protective gloves when washing, cleaning or making rough use of your hands
--Anti histamine like claritin, allegra can help reduce the symptoms

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Might also be latex allergy. Pay attention to when you come in contact with rubber and if it gets worse,
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I have the same thing. I use a steroid on my fingers, wrap them in saran wrap, put vinyl gloves on then cotton gloves over them. One week on, 3 weeks off. Mine get so bad I cant feel the tips of my fingers.  I also have a latex allergy. Vinyl gloves only

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I tried a product called Yin-Care from an acupuncturist and it worked way better and with less side effects than prednisone and worked better than steroids. There are other Chinese herbs which are better for chronic conditions that you can use for your specific condition, so I'd make an appointment to see a Chinese Herbalist or get a referral from an acupuncturist.

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Hi, I have had the same problem as Mauidream.  It started over 3 years ago, about 1 month before I was pretty sick with a chest infection, then a throat infection which turned into strep throat.  I figure it was all the anti biotics( I was on 2 or 3 in a row for my chest infection and strep throat) or the strep throat that triggered this.  I have been to several doctors/dermatologists and have tried every lotion and potion out there. It started on my thunb then slowly spread to my index finger and slowly started to spread down my hand. And I got the cracking,peeling,redness,swelling etc,etc.  It was a cycle, when the new skin grew back my immune system would attack it.  I have tried several drugs and only the last drug has helped.  It has stopped the spread and severity and the occurance of the flare ups.  I am on Cyclosproine an immuno surpressent. Now being on this drug is not the best thing in the world, any drug that lowers your immune sysytem is not something you want to be on for a long period of time, but my hands were getting to the point that it was affecting everything in my life, plus the stress of watching it spread after every cycle was not good.  Anyways cyclosporine is the one thing that I have had any positive results using.  Like I said I have tried $300 creams, every hand cream, fish oil, vitamins etc and nothing has worked for me except this drug.  Now I know that what works for one person may not work for another.  I still search all the time for a solution where I wont have to be on this drug and my hands will be healthy again.  I hope this helps, and if you have any questions ask away I will be checking this site on a regular basis.

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