Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Pretty severe itchy rash after Amoxicillin reaction

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 117 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • June 2, 2007
  • 09:26 AM

Title says it all.
I was to take Amoxicillin for 10 days (prescription by dentist for tooth problem), on day 7 I woke up with a rash around upper torso. By the next day, it had spread full-body except for my head. The rash was spotted with big pink spots that were so thick in places it just covered all my skin.
At this point there actually was no itch, neither did the rash even hurt, felt more embarrassing then anything.
And of course I stopped taking Amox as soon as I saw the rash.

Now I've had the rash since Tuesday morning, it is now Saturday around 2:14am, I can't sleep, the itching is killing me slowly but surely. The rash itself is actually leaving, it is going away in the same pattern it came. Now the rash is really only visible from my knees down.

I have been taking cold showers and not going in the sun so as not to upset it. I have a regular lotion which helps "dry, itchy skin". I also have Califlora Gel as well as Gold Bond medicated anti-itch cream. None of these things are cutting the itching back at this point, it is driving me insane! It feels like pins and needles, I am compelled to at least touch the spot that itches, I am trying not to actually scratch.

The main problem areas are around my joints, elbows and knees. Moreso now at the knees since that is where the rash is worst. I tried sleeping in cotton full length jammies, tried bare-legged, tried putting a fan on my legs to keep cool. I even rubbed Aloevera juice on it but it will not stop bugging me. As of now I've got 15 layers of lotions on it and I can't put any more!

I'm at wits end, if this itching doesn't stop, I can't do anything! Help! What works?

Thanks a ton!

Reply Flag this Discussion
  • just had a cousin wiyh severe reaction to Amoxicillin diagnose with SERUM SICKNESS or possibly STEVEN JOHNSON SYNDROME. Very bad side affects life treating.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • August 30, 2008
    • 08:34 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I had been having itching for a while. But when told doctor, that was it. No more Amoxicillin for me. Chart is tagged. Remember penicillin reactions can explode at any time even if have been nonexistent or mild before.
    Abbydoodle 138 Replies
    • September 3, 2008
    • 02:51 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I took amoxicillin over a year ago and suffered from a severe reaction. Its now more than a year on and it has caused me long term skin problems. The acne that was caused by amoxicillian has reduced slightly but I still have white bumps under the skin surface which is uncomfortable for me.I also suffer from dry patches on my arms now, generally I now have extremely sensitive skin.I have tried everything that I know of to get rid of this skin disorder. I need some advice to cure this ongoing problem, any suggestions would be much appreciated thank you.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • September 24, 2008
    • 01:06 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • It was helpful reading this happening to others taking Amoxicillin. I recently and still am going through it now. I didn't have a rash but I had itching all over starting on day 9 of my 10 day course of amoxicillin. I toughed it out for around a week before going to the doctors. My usual allergy medications of claretin and Benadryl when needed were not doing a thing. At the first visit, doctor told me to take Zantac for a month and to take three days worth of steroids and to continue to take my allergy meds. Next day I also called my allergist to let them know what was happening, they also prescribed a stronger course of allergy meds called hydroxyzine to take at night, and claretin in the morning. That lasted a few days until instead of my skin being itchy, it felt like my skin was bruised to the touch, esp my back and torso area. Also I'd wake up in the middle of the night with swollen hands and feet that painfully itched with quarter size hives. That completely freaked me out and I went to see the allergist and the dermatologist the next day. I was so frustrated and stressed out with all this happening. All I wanted to be was well. They told me I was experiencing angioedema due to some allergy trigger, which could be anything, and most likely impossible to figure out what is happening. Currently I'm still on the Zantac, the hydroxyzine at night, and now 180 mg of Allegra during the day, so far I still get random patches of rashes that don't itch and marks on my hands. Back to the dermatologist tomorrow for my 2 week follow up. I also did find an article that sometimes taking antibiotics can change the chemistry of how the cells in our body produce histamine, resulting in all these allergy related issues and changes to what you might have allergies to. Also read more on amoxicillin rashes on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amoxicillin which also explains that it can either be a side effect or a true allergy, but only a doctor can tell the difference. Good luck to everyone experiencing this, but honestly as long as you aren't having trouble breathing, I was told that it isn't something serious.
    smartq8 2 Replies
    • November 10, 2008
    • 10:07 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I went through a reaction to amoxicillin prescribed by a dentist. I found cold showers did help. Definitely do not take a hot shower! My reaction started on my chest and back about 5 days into a 10 day prescription of amoxicillin. The rash progressively covered my entire body. My arms and feet were especially itchy. The entire reaction lasted about a week with the feet being the final area affected. My dentist was not very concerned as I had breathing difficulties. I put anti-itch lotion on my feet as you would for a poison ivy rash. Otherwise no other medication. I found lots of posts with questions about the rash but few on duration. Not fun but hopefully duration will be about a week as it was for me.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • December 7, 2008
    • 08:50 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Dear Acuann:I've taken broad-spectrum antibiotics all my life and have yet to experience the Candida overgrowth you are so concerned about.In fact,I know of no one who has experienced this ''awful''consequence of taking antibiotics.Could it be that you've been indoctrinated into a false belief?I think so!
    richard wayne2b 1232 Replies
    • December 30, 2008
    • 01:33 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Dear Acuann:I've taken broad-spectrum antibiotics all my life and have yet to experience the Candida overgrowth you are so concerned about.In fact,I know of no one who has experienced this ''awful''consequence of taking antibiotics.Could it be that you've been indoctrinated into a false belief?I think so! WEll, Richard. I have been diagnosed with candida overload thru a stool exam in the past. I have struggled with candida related issues (not going to elaborate on these as you clearly don't believe there ARE candida related issues) ever since the birth of my children over six years ago. I see candida overload fairly frequently in my acupuncture clinic. My fibro patients show candida signs, as well as other chronic patients. MOST patients I've seen have been female, and I think this is a more common occurance due to hormonal changes. You have been very lucky not to have had any issues with candida due to your antibiotic use. Not only have I had problems with this, but also clostridium difficile infection, which I would not wish on my worst enemy! C. Diff is becoming increasingly common and harder to treat. It saddens me that many docs today still don't think about candida unless you are a late stage AIDs patient. I find Dr. Crook's book, the Candida Connection, a very good source of info on candida. I certainly don't mean to imply that EVERYONE will suffer from this problem, but some do. Best wishesDOM
    acuann 3080 Replies
    • December 31, 2008
    • 05:42 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I didn't say that Ididn't believe in Candida albicans overgrowth,which not uncommonly occurs in patients who have had long-term broad-spectrum antibiotics.I just don't believe it occurs with the frequency which you do nor with the virulence.I did get information from your reply that I'd suspected:that as an acupuncturist you're more likely to believe in ''New Age'' crap than I am.As far as that book you mentioned,it's not a textbook,is it?
    richard wayne2b 1232 Replies
    • December 31, 2008
    • 01:06 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • AS I suspected ""Dr.''Crook's book is just another in a long line of pseudoscientific lay publications that people like you take to heart.By the way,it's called "'THE YEAST CONNECTION.''
    richard wayne2b 1232 Replies
    • December 31, 2008
    • 01:15 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • AS I suspected ""Dr.''Crook's book is just another in a long line of pseudoscientific lay publications that people like you take to heart.By the way,it's called "'THE YEAST CONNECTION.''I was prescribed Omnicef (have known allergy to penicillin) and started breaking out in a rash arms/legs/trunk that got progressively worse (expanded to neck/scalp). Presribed 6 day tapered dose of 4mg methyl prednisolone. Rash almost gone. Presribed Zmax for continued symptoms. Rash came back in mild form. Then given depomedrol shot. Rash raged and was covering all body again within a few hours and intensely itchy. Two weeks later I was desparate and went to dr again. Prescribed prednisone 40 mg per day tapering down over time, hydrocortisone valerate topical cream, atarax. Rash improved but not gone when done. Now prescribed another strong cream triamcinolone. I am not sure it is helping. I am also using Neem oil and lotion - helps relieve itching for hours. It had been a month and a half. Is this rash ever going away??????
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 17, 2009
    • 05:56 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • I'm having the same thing right now. Just finished a round of amoxycilin. This is the 3rd time its happened. Nothing topical worked before. . .since the itch is systemic. Prednisone worked both times before. . .reset my system. I'm calling the doctor and asking for it again.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 18, 2009
    • 01:03 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Complications of Crohn’s Disease

    Recognize the risks associated with Crohn’s disease.

    8 Surprising Facts About Cholesterol

    Did you know that one in six US adults has high cholesterol?

  • I know this was originally posted a long while ago. But I am wondering what happened. I had a very similar issue about 3 years ago now. I had an ear infection and was on amoxicillin and after a few days I had the same thing happen. I had terrible itchy uncomfortable rash all over my body. I stopped the meds immediately and took benedryl. It eventually went away but a few months later I began to itch again (for no apparent reason). This time the itch was concentrated on my chest, neck, chin, around my eyes, ears and nose. Sometimes my hands and feet itch (but a rash doesnt appear). I have been to my regular doctor, an allergist and a dermatologist. I have been on all kinds of creams, lotions and meds. I started using detergent and soaps that are free of dyes and perfumes. I try to use natural and sensitive skin products. I tried changing my diet and I am careful about the materials of my clothes (I wear a lot of cotton). I even was on an anti-anxiety med. It shows up gradually but there is nothing to do to make it stop and it lasts several weeks and eventually turns flakey and goes away. It will go away for a week or two and then come back. It is itchy, uncomfortable (I can't sleep unless I take benedryl) and even is painful. Plus it looks terrible! Any help or advice would be great. Its been going on for 3.5 years now!! :confused:
    lakini241 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • It sounds like a severe case of seborrheic dermatitis.
    richard wayne2b 1232 Replies Flag this Response
  • On March 7th I was prescribed Amoxicillin for an ear infection. I took it for 3 days, then, because my ear infection was worse, was switched to Cephalexin. Two days after starting the Cephalexin, I thought I had a fever; I felt hot, was flushed, and even had chills. The next day I still had what I thought was a fever, but when I went to take a shower I noticed I was covered with a very red rash, which then began to itch in a prickly way. That night my heart was beating fast and so strongly that I was making my mattress move. My doctor discontinued the Cephalexin and suggested I take Benadryl (which did nothing for the worsening itch). The rash moved to my hands and feet, then began to fade, though the itching was so bad I lost two nights' sleep. Cool packs helped but since the itching was so widespread it was not possible for them to work well enough. My doctor suggested that I continue with the Benadryl for two weeks, then to switch to Atarax if the rash was still a problem. I took Benadryl 4 times a day for 3 days, then stopped taking it because the itching was gone. The rash had faded to a light raspberry color and much of the area it covered is now very dry.. Yesterday, the itching began again and today I've been itchy much of the day; I did take a hot shower this morning, which aggravated the itching. I also notice light patches of the rash returning here and there. I've started taking the Benadryl 4 times a day again, and this time will stick to it for the 2 weeks my doctor originally suggested. Hopefully, I will not have to try the Atarax (which sounds scary when I Googled it).My questions: I've had this rash for two weeks now. Is that typical? Why would it have come back? Because I had stopped the Benadryl? I was taking Cephalexin when the rash started, but it sounds like it could have actually been due to a delayed reaction to the Amoxicillin, correct? Is it true that the itching is because the drug is triggering some kind of release, and that eventually what is being released depletes itself? Thanks for any advice!
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I had a skin rash over the trunk of my body, legs, arms, and hands after taking Amoxicillin for 10 days. The sun seemed to make it even worse, with or without spf tanning lotion. Nothing topical worked to stop the itch. I tried aloe, cortizone, and cold showers. I FINALLY GOT RELIEF when i did a natural intestinal cleanse, parasitic cleanse to get rid of the bad bacteria, and restored my flora with a probiotic. After a day there was a drastic improvement and after about 3 days the rash almost gone, after a week there is absolutely no rash remaining. No more sleep lose, no more embarassment! I highly recommend this to anyone going thru this maddening condition!
    natdoc77 1 Replies Flag this Response
  • Wow, its so good to hear that something worked for you natdoc77. Where did you get the cleansing thing? Whole foods or vitamin cottage or something like that? What is it called exactly? I really want to try it. I have been clear for just over a week-my friend suggested that I quit eating any chocolate and so far it has worked. I am not sure that it is because of the chocolate but I was willing to try anything. I have been clear for up to close to a month before but never really longer than that. It always starts back up with an annoying itch on my neck and then spreads as a red itchy rash all around my neck and chest and onto my upper arms. Super annoying. It has been 4 years of this. I really hope that this cleanse works for me. Thanks!:o
    lakini241 2 Replies Flag this Response
  • I am having an allergic reaction to amoxicillin, which I took to combat a bacterial infection. On day 1 I took my first dose (AM). No symptoms. On day 2 I took another dose (AM). Symptoms started to appear by the afternoon. My inner thighs became very itchy and bright red, but no hives. I stopped taking any more of the amoxicillan after the AM dose. On day 3 the rash appeared and was very itchy with small raised welts. It felt like a combination of pins & needs & a bad sunburn. I also had very low energy -- and doing anything required a lot of stamina. (tough to do when you work part-time and have 2 toddlers!) It progressed from my thighs to my stomach & chest. I started taking Benadryl which helped a little. I also tried Benadryl cream which felt soothing but did nothing to make the rash go away since it was caused by an oral antibiotic, & not a skin-contact type itchy rash (like poison ivy). On day 4 the rash & red skin had covered my body from the top of my head to the top of my feet (not soles). I also began to have a fever -- 102 degrees. I took ibuprofen which helped reduce the fever. That night I got only 1-1/2 hrs sleep because the itching made me miserable. And that was after taking 2 Benadryl, which normally would knock me out for a good 12 hours & groggy the next morning (and this time I wasn't.) On day 5 I went to the doctor who prescribed a 6-day steroid -- prednisolone, and a 5-day antihistimine (25 mg HCI). The antihistimine prescribed is really no different than the benadryl I was already taking. On day 5 I also noticed that the palms of my hands were beginning to itch & that my face was beginning to feel slightly puffy -- like from a shot of novacaine. That evening I slept 6 hours but only because I forced myself not to scratch, & probably because I had not slept the night before. It is now day 6 -- 5 days after symptoms of an allergic reaction began to appear & day 2 of steroids. It is still very uncomfortable. The rash on my thighs & my chest is clearing a little although all of the redness remains in full force (like a sunburn). I have more energy & no temperature. The swelling in my fingers & hands has started to come down a little & my face does not feel "slightly puffy" any more. 'Just wanted to share my story. The doctor's office & pharmacist have both flagged my file as being allergic. They also said that my 2 children could also have an allergy to amoxicillan since it seems to run in families; therefore I will make certain they are not prescribed any amoxy for bacterial infections.
    lskmartin 1 Replies Flag this Response
  • This is an old post I realize, but just in case this happens to anyone else. I had a root canal and was prescribed amoxicillan. About a week into taking it, I got the severe hives and itching. I also had severe swelling & it looked as though my hands, knees and feet were water balloons. I was prescribed prednisone. They were 10 mg pills. Directions were 3 in the AM, 3 PM, the next day 2 in the AM, 2 in the PM and the last day it was 1 in the AM, 1 at night. I've never taken prednisone like that. Anyway, a day after the prednisone stopped I started getting severe pain which started in my right hip joint, then both knees and both hip joints, my shoulders and my wrists and hands. I went to the ER when it started in my jaw. The ER physician said he thought it was still in line with the amoxicillan reaction and prescribed a few things. It's been 8 days now and even though most of the hives are gone, I still have purple blotches on my legs and still itch. The pain is something that surprised me. I couldn't lift my hands and had someone dress me so I could go into the ER. It was excruciating. I have to wonder if this was the prednisone. I've always been directed to wean off of it and would be down to 5 mg pills for a few days before I stopped taking it. To be on 20 mg one day and then 0 the next didn't seem right.Anyway, prednisone or not, it was the strangest thing and wanted to post it in case it happened to someone else.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • This is an old post I realize, but just in case this happens to anyone else. I had a root canal and was prescribed amoxicillan. About a week into taking it, I got the severe hives and itching. I also had severe swelling & it looked as though my hands, knees and feet were water balloons. I was prescribed prednisone. They were 10 mg pills. Directions were 3 in the AM, 3 PM, the next day 2 in the AM, 2 in the PM and the last day it was 1 in the AM, 1 at night. I've never taken prednisone like that. Anyway, a day after the prednisone stopped I started getting severe pain which started in my right hip joint, then both knees and both hip joints, my shoulders and my wrists and hands. I went to the ER when it started in my jaw. The ER physician said he thought it was still in line with the amoxicillan reaction and prescribed a few things. It's been 8 days now and even though most of the hives are gone, I still have purple blotches on my legs and still itch. The pain is something that surprised me. I couldn't lift my hands and had someone dress me so I could go into the ER. It was excruciating. I have to wonder if this was the prednisone. I've always been directed to wean off of it and would be down to 5 mg pills for a few days before I stopped taking it. To be on 20 mg one day and then 0 the next didn't seem right.Anyway, prednisone or not, it was the strangest thing and wanted to post it in case it happened to someone else.I too had to take amoxil and on day 3 I developed hives, on day 4 I developed joint pain like you described, it was excruciating!!! The Doc prescribed me prednisone for the hives, the swelling in my knees and elbows (where all my pain was) and now I'm off of the prednisone and still have very minor pain, I think this is the end. Just wanted you to know it was the amoxil that gave you the joint pain, it just took a few days like with me for it to come on. I still have these purple marks where the hives used to be, my doc said that it's normal. Hope this helps, if I were you I'd stay away from anything penicillin!
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • my 2 1/2 year has just been diagnosed with lyme disease, last friday the dr. put her on Amoxicillin for 10 days till the results came back this thursday, then said she wanted her on for 21 days since the test was positive, yesterday morning, Friday, day 7 she broke out with a prickly heat type rash on her back and legs, it spread to her arms and lastly her face, the only place that is bumpy is her legs. She is starting to complain that it is itchy now, she looks terrible. i called the dr. yesterday she said she should have had the reaction sooner, keep a close eye on it, but keep her on the antibiotic b/c there really isn't anything else as effective to treat her lyme disease, she wants to knock it out of her, we are lucky we found out about it right away right away, The pharmacist said to give her an antihistamine, and maybe take her off of the amoxicillin. I am calling the Dr. again today, her face is noticably swollen, and her belly looks swollen, more than normal. any help, advise would be appreciated.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
Thanks! A moderator will review your post and it will be live within the next 24 hours.