Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Non-Itchy Rash on Legs, Severe Abdominal Pain

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 5 Replies
  • Posted By: MemphisMuse
  • April 11, 2007
  • 02:35 AM

Pardon for the dual post, but I think this belongs in the "cannot get a diagnosis" thread, with some additional information.

My son is 24. For the past 2 years or so, he has had a recurrent non-itchy, flat rash on his legs and feet, and severe abdominal pain near his umbilicus, accompanied usually by vomiting. We didn't connect the rash to the other symptoms at first and tried to find the source from topical agents (soap etc) to allergies (no luck there either). It looks almost like Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever rash, but doctors ruled that out, calling it "some sort of vasculitis". Doctors treated his stomach pain with antacids, with no relief. He was admitted to the local ER for vomiting blood, bloody diarrhea, severe abdominal pain, and the rash had spread to his entire body. His blood sugar was elevated - although it hasn't been before or since. He is thin for his height and doesn't seem to ever gain much weight at all. He was tested for everything including: Lyme's disease, lupus, Crohn's, ulcerative colitis, diabetes, Henoch-Schonlein purpura, STD's, and allergies. He has had an upper GI, CT scan, and had endoscopies from both ends - no inflammation found. All they found was a slight increase in lymphocytes in his gastrointestinal tract - "not enough for cancer" was all I was told. All other tests came back negative. They sent a biopsy of his rash to some lab in Virginia and keep telling us they don't have the results back yet (this was in November!). He has never been out of the country so they ruled out tropical diseases. "We don't know what's wrong" is all the doctors tell me. He was treated and released - his rash having gone away and the stomach pain abated. No diagnosis yet and thousands of dollars in medical bills. He has no insurance, and he's sick again (rash, abdominal pain, vomiting - no blood this time). I am worried sick. Can anyone help us??

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5 Replies:

  • I was browsing the web looking for answers when your post struck me--- I have very similar symptoms. THe rash is new, but it's slowly spreading, I think it flares when the abdominal pain gets worse. Crone's runs in my family, so I've had a colonoscopy and endoscopy and all was negative-- EXCEPT for 'slight inflammation', which the Drs said could be normal. Drs have also ruled out celiac disease, colitis, and food allergies-- even though I am really sensitive to raw fruits and veggies. So I've been prescribed an anti-inflammitory for IBS, but I don't even take it anymore because it doesn't do anything. I've also been diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis, but different Drs disagree about that one. I've just about given up on Drs, which is why I started browsing the web for my own answers--- has your son found any relief yet???Hope all is well, Stephanie
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I'm sorry to hear you're going through something similar. My son's abdominal pain has abated for now, but the rash (which had faded) is back. Now it's primarily located on his right foot, and the sole of that foot is swollen. He says there is foot pain as well. I am tracking his symptoms in the hopes we will find some sort of pattern. His rash, I see from looking on the net, most resembles Henoch-Schonlein purpura, though the doctors say they took a skin biopsy for that (we still haven't heard back). Why the rash cleared up with antibiotics is beyond me, unless there was a secondary infection. This rash has been on and off for over 2 years, and the stomach pain on and off for nearly 2. The doctors aren't sure if they are connected, but with no insurance we are unlikely to find out unless I take him the the ER again. He has no known allergies that I am aware of, except for penicillin and he seems to have a very strong reaction to flea and mosquito bites. The doctors insist it isn't Lyme's or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, but thinking back we think his health problems started when he was bitten in his college dorm by something and his leg became swollen. He was taken to the hospital then, given an antihistamine, and released. It sorted that out. A few months later the rash appeared. I always wonder if that bite had anything to do with his subsequent problems...it wasn't a tick bite and it wasn't a recluse spider bite. The doctors didn't know what it was - some kind of generic spider but hey in a dorm, who knows? If we do find out what it is, this forum will know as soon as I do. I am scared to death he has something serious. If it is possible the two things (rash and GI problems) aren't related, why isn't he getting better with either one?I hope you can find the answer to what's making you ill. I know it must be very frustrating and scary.Muse
    MemphisMuse 3 Replies Flag this Response
  • Thanks for responding so quickly. I'm sorry to hear you're still without answers. Penicillin allergies run in my family-- but I'm only allergic to codein and a group of antibiotics that I can't remember the name for.. metratryclines or tetracyclines or something. But I am allergic to mosquitos, etc. and bites always welt up like quarters. Weird similarities. Best of luck, and I'll keep checking the forum!!Stephanie
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • www.ahummingbirdsguide.com see how many other sx your son had, it's an autoimmune caused by a virus...good luck
    mommy cat 1654 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hello,

    I found your post because I have symptoms very similar to what you describe you son having. I have gone to the emergency room because of the severe abdominal pain, but was released after it subsided. I now have the rash appearing in my groin and underarms.

    Please let me know what happened with your son.

    Thank you,
    Tim
    Anonymous 1 Replies
    • October 15, 2014
    • 01:14 PM
    • 0
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