Psoriatic Arthritis - skin flare up

Hi all

I have psoriatic arthritis and currently experiencing a bad flare up of psoriasis on the palms of my hands, the worst I have had for years. I have a dermatology appointment in a couple of weeks, albeit for a different condition, so have held off going to my GP. Just wondering if any fellow sufferers have any advice on how to treat this in the meantime. All suggestions gratefully received - thanks!

12 Replies

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  • I have primary Sjogrens rather than PsA but I do get this intensely itchy Pompholyx on the palms and soles as well as between my fingers. Recently I begged the gp for something more effective to relieve it and he prescribed Double Base gel. This has been the best cream I've ever found - after a lifetime of eczema and allergic dermatitis. Not sure if it would help psoriasis or not but I thought it worth a mention.

  • Thanks Twitchytoes - anything is worth a try! 😀

  • Hiya. I've had psoriasis on my palms, though not too badly. The problem is that anything you put on them comes straight off unless you sit around all day with your hands in the air. I'd imagine that putting a good emollient on over night and then wearing gloves (I think I'd prefer cotton gloves to plastic bags, though perhaps they'd work too). One emollient that really does seem to tame psoriasis for me is Balneum Cream. I get it on prescription but I think it should be available over the counter at pharmacies too. Regular application is also the only way I reckon, Balneum Cream sorted out persistent psoriasis on my leg but missing just one day seem to set me back.

  • Thanks Postle2 - I will check this out. Seems to only be available on prescription in Boots (at least on the online shop) but looks like it might be available to buy from other online sources, including Amazon. I do think that lack of perseverance might be part of my problem though!

  • I think the worse it is, the harder it is to persevere, probably because morale droops somewhat. I was covered in Psoriasis last year and overwhelmed by the routine I was meant to keep up as well as by the problem itself. But I bet if you moisturised your palms nightly (or daily if you can work out a way of doing that effectively) you might well get a result. Could be a long haul but worth it.

  • Ouch! Such widespread psoriasis must have been a nightmare and I can understand how you might get disheartened with the treatment. I think myself lucky that it's only my hands that are affected.

    And yes, I think perseverance is definitely the key (to many things!) and it's where I fall down. I do apply cream and wear gloves at night - once or twice, then I forget, or can't be bothered and then wonder why I'm not getting results! I suppose we all look for that 'magic bullet' that will cure all our ailments instantly, but never learn that it doesn't exist!

    Oh well, onwards and upwards!

  • Hi Soreknees

    As the poster above mentions my Mum swears by Double base gel for her psoriasis .

    She has it on prescription and says it really really helps her itch.

    I've got Seronegative rheumatoid arthritis but I think perhaps this might change to a diagnosis of PSA. My hospital appointment is at the end of the month so will find out then maybe.

    Hope you get some relief.

    All the best

    Mx

  • Thanks Mandalou - hoping to be able to get some over the counter in Boots today, otherwise online.

    Good luck with your hospital appointment - whichever diagnosis you get, I hope you get effective treatment.

  • Ps DoubleBase is recommended because it is non greasy and absorbs quite quickly but seems to stay in the skin somehow. It's a bit of a miracle cream. You can buy it over the counter and then if it suits you get it on prescription in industrial quantities. You can use it all the time without needing gloves etc.

    I do also need betnovate ointment thinly spread to knock it on the head at the start of an outbreak at night. And I honestly don't think things get itchier than Pompholyx!

    "Pompholyx eczema is a type of eczema that is usually restricted to the hands and feet. In most cases, pompholyx eczema involves the development of intensely itchy watery blisters, mostly affecting the sides of the fingers, the palms of the hands and the soles of feet."

  • Thank you Soreknees,

    I'm already on Etanercept and Hydroxychloroquine and my Rheumy says that whichever I've got the treatment is the same until last line.

    Hope the arthritis part is behaving itself for you currently?

    Mx

  • Thankfully I usually only seem to get arthritis flare ups once or twice a year affecting knees and/or ankles, and usually just one or two joints at a time, but when it does happen, it's excruciating. Painkillers don't touch it, and I can't take NSAID's, but I can get a steroid injection in the bum which usually settles it (eventually!).

    Until now, I have agreed with rheumatologist not to start on DMARDs because flare ups are so infrequent and the side effects could be bad, so it would be like taking a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

    However, I had a really bad one in October affecting both knees and one ankle and the doctor I saw for my steroid injection thought that the disease may be progressing, so DMARDs might be the next step when I see the consultant at the beginning of March.

    It's a nightmare when it flares up, but when I read some of the stories of other members of this forum, I realise that I get off lightly! 🙂

  • Well the best of luck for March and I hope you remain pain free going forwards.

    I know exactly what you mean about nothing touching the pain. I describe it as almost exquisite in the way it's so overwhelming.

    Thank God that 90% of the time we manage to keep a lid on it. I've got three weeks until my next appointment with the Rheumy, I will post back when I've shown him my pics of my rash on my lower right leg, inner calf.

    Mx

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