Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Blistering on Joints? (Pictures!)

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 11 Replies
  • Posted By: koneko
  • September 7, 2008
  • 08:35 AM

A few months ago (I can't remember how long it's been now), I began to notice unusual blisters developing on a few of my fingers. I showed them to my mother (yes I'm a 19 year old female who still lives at home), and she passed it off as poison ivy/oak/sumac, even though they didn't itch and I don't go outside. Deciding that they were more annoying than problematic, I put them in the back of my mind and went about my business. Every day it seemed I got more and more, till nearly every finger were covered in at least two of the strange blisters! What was so strange however, was that they only developed over the JOINTS (over, under, and on the sides of) on my fingers, but nowhere else in between. I brought this to my mother's attention again, and this time she blamed it on my 'tendency for the dramatic' and told me to let it go. The blistering continued, soon covering both of my elbows and a few of my toes. Finally I'd had enough and forced my mother to take me to the emergency room (I have no insurance). Once there I became quite the talk of the hospital! Different doctors, AND nurses came in, all asking me questions and guessing at what they thought it was. Once they realized they didn't know, they entered their database, and there I sat for over two hours while they tried to identify the non-itching (except when I get exceptionally warm), non-painful (except when the blistering make the skin tight) lesions. After nearly three hours a doctor came in and informed me that he had no idea what was wrong with me, but he didn't deem it life-threatening and told me that my 'rash' would clear up eventually, perhaps taking several months. My mother was furious and demanded that something be done, so the doctor wrote me a prescription, that /may not help/ but it /wouldn't hurt/ either; my mother was not convinced. We went to the Pharmacy only to be informed that the medication I'd been prescribed was for ACID-REFLUX, and in the pharmacists humble opinion, would do jack-squat.Resigned to accept my bumpy fate, I simply chose to wait it out as the doctor recommended, and after 3-4 months of waiting, this is what I've noticed. The blisters never completely fade away, I always have one or two at least on a few fingers or even my elbows. I have yet to see blistering as bad as my initial break-out, although the one I have right now rivals it slightly. I have scoured the internet and have yet to find blistering that resembles mine, or even a hint as to what may be the cause; I'd like to know in case I have to worry about it becoming something serious! Included are pictures of my inital breakout. You'll notice that the blisters are round, formed only over joints, and seem to be almost /pitted/ in the middle (that baffled the doctors). They do not itch, do not hurt (but they make my fingers stiff), seem to come and go without completely disappearing, and I don't think I have any other relevant symptoms.The doctors described them as /umbilical/ in nature, whatever that means...Thanks in advance and sorry for rambling!http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/http://forums.wrongdiagnosis.com/

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11 Replies:

  • You link to your picture isnt right.. im hoping you will fix it so we can look at them.
    taniaaust1 2,267 Replies
    • September 8, 2008
    • 03:18 AM
    • 0
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  • http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/blist3.jpghttp://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/blist2.jpghttp://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/moreblist.jpghttp://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/blister1.jpghttp://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/blist3.jpghttp://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/blist2.jpghttp://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/moreblist.jpghttp://img.photobucket.com/albums/v624/akasheppy/blister1.jpg
    koneko 1 Replies
    • September 8, 2008
    • 04:01 AM
    • 0
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  • Hi,My partner had something similar and was diagnosed with reynauds disease-the poor circulation seemed to cause them and were made worse when he was run down or exposed to sudden extreme temperature changes. We put aloe vera on them to heal them which worked well and now he is on amlopidine tablets to improve his circulation and open up the capillaries and they are better. Hope this helps
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • September 8, 2008
    • 02:17 PM
    • 0
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  • No idea, but if you have joint pain too you should see a rheumatologist. I'd make an appt. with a Dermatologist too.
    aquila 1,263 Replies
    • September 8, 2008
    • 04:20 PM
    • 0
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  • Sure looks like gouty lesions to me.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies
    • September 18, 2008
    • 07:36 PM
    • 0
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  • Looks rather wart-like to me but I like the reference to gout. I imagine you could get one cut off and analyzed. Next time, go to the doctor's office; it's cheaper.
    Monsterlove 2,921 Replies
    • September 19, 2008
    • 04:19 AM
    • 0
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  • Okay,this is not gouty tophii, which is what several folks have made reference to and is caused by an immune response in persons with arthritis. The inflammation occurs beneath the skin as well, but because the skin layers are thin at the joints of the digits on the hand, the inflammation is capable of erupting through the epidermis. Gouty lesions of this type tend to disappear and reappear in an unpredictable fashion. It is also evidence by the photographs that the lesions are not from gouty tophii because the joints are neither swollen or deformed to any extent that would suggest an arthritic process. The skin condition in the photograph is due to a papilloma virus and causes the characteristic wart-like projections seen near the distal portion of the index finger. The lesions erupt and heal, causing the tissues to become rough and non-tender after a period of time. The lesions can be treated with prescriptions such as Veregen or Aldara, but there is no cure for HPV. It's important to have an evaluation at some point to determine whether you may have outbreaks elsewhere and certain disorders are linked to the presence of HPV. It's not life-threatening in this case, but you should still be evaluated. Best regards, J Cottle, MD
    JCottleMD 580 Replies
    • September 19, 2008
    • 10:28 PM
    • 0
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  • I really thought it was HPV, too, especially after seeing the tv show about the man with it all over his body...
    Monsterlove 2,921 Replies
    • September 20, 2008
    • 01:32 AM
    • 0
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  • I realize that I'm replying to a very old message, but did you ever get a solution to this? I have the same lesions on the joints in my hands as well as all over the pads of my fingers.I went to the doctor right away when I noticed them because I thought it was HPV. It was not HPV.I have since been to three different doctors and am no closer to a resolution.The lesions on my hands look the same, but I have quite a bit of pain when touch anything. Did you have nay pain at all?
    britten.thompson 1 Replies
    • February 23, 2012
    • 08:14 PM
    • 0
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  • I also have been having this issue for the past 13 years. Mine look exactly the same as those pictured! I get them on my fingers, elbows, knees, and feet. Usually they start after a high fever, and when i get Mono (which i have had 7 times). Consistantly the Doctors have told me they are either fever blisters, or a dormant virus that is agrivated by the high fevers i get with mono. They will last up to 2-3 months and can be very uncomfertable when pressure is applied, so pretty much using my hands, walking, or bumping my elbow or knees. They have never popped, they just eventually disapate.
    jessirene 1 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi, I was just wondering if you’ve had any joy with a diagnosis? I too am suffering from the same type of blisters on my hands and feet. I’ve had them for about a month now. I’ve been to the doctor and she was at a loss for what it was. She sent me to get blood tests and all that came back was a low white blood cell count which suggests low immunity which I already knew. She also prescribed a steroid cream for the blister but they still seem to be appearing and not really disappearing. They just become hard and dry but still sensitive. I have felt tired and washed out for the past few weeks. I too have suffered from Mono in the past and so was wondering if this was a relapse. In the mornings my feet are and hands are very sensitive when any pressure is applied i.e. walking or typing. I took anti-flam in an attempt thinking it would reduce the pain but all to no avail. This whole thing is a bit odd. Please let me know if you’ve had any luck with your experience.
    Jimmy66 1 Replies
    • October 29, 2012
    • 03:04 AM
    • 0
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