Do you get random skin rashes with fibromyalgia!? These rashes can be painful, bumpy, raised, itchy and you may even experience your skin crawling. I often experience these rashes. I even broke out in a fibromyalgia rash just sitting at the doctor’s office. Since I was already at the doctor’s office I decided to show my doctor the rash that appeared out of no where. My doctor thought I had been scratching the area, but I had not scratched it once. It appeared red, inflamed and felt hot. I was always so puzzled to why I got random rashes. Sometimes the rashes look like heat rashes, but are actually not caused by sweating.
Not everyone with fibromyalgia will develop rashes, but many people do. Rashes can appear at anytime anywhere on the body. Some fibromyalgia rashes can become so sensitive it is difficult to even sleep. If you are like me you often wonder what can cause these rashes to appear. The exact cause to the rashes has never been determined, but there are several factors that may contribute to a rash arising.
Possible causes of why fibromyalgia rashes appear:
1. Medications you are on to help treat your fibromyalgia symptoms could be the culprit. Talk to your doctor of pharmacist to discuss whether your medications could possibly be causing the rashes to appear. I would advise getting any rash checked if you are unsure.
2. Signals in your central nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves). Your brain could possibly be sending out “itch” signals to the nerves in your skin. Your skin will become oversensitive. The result of your skin becoming oversensitive will create a sensation of itchiness.
3. Chemical imbalances. A chemical imbalance in the brain could trigger a rash to appear. When you scratch an itch your brain will respond by releasing serotonin which helps stop the pain or itchiness. However, the more you scratch the more you itch. The more scratching and itching you do the more serotonin levels increase. The itching and scratching cycle can possibly lead to worse skin pain linked to fibromyalgia. Researchers completed a study on mice that showed the release of serotonin made the itchiness in mice worse. The higher the serotonin levels are the more you itch which then results in a rash forming.
Food for thought… there are a lot of medications used to lower pain levels which have serotonin in them. Do these medications create the same response?!? The higher the dose, the more serotonin levels we have causing a rash to form?!?
4. Is an immune response responsible for creating the rash?! If this is true your immune system believes the proteins under your skin are foreign invaders. This would promote your immune system to release histamine which would increase skin sensitivity, which results in a rash. There has been no research on this hypothesis as of yet.
How to manage a fibromyalgia rash. ..
1. Avoid scratching the rash even if it is itchy. The more you scratch, the worse the rash becomes.
2. Apply a cold cloth or compress. The cold will reduce swelling and any pain. It may even help reduce the itchiness.
3. Apply a hydrocortisone cream. It will prevent a histamine reaction from taking place and help reduce itchiness and help relieve the rash.
4. Avoid using extremely hot water to shower. Use lukewarm water instead. Using lukewarm water will help soothe the rash.
5. If you have dry skin, use moisturizing lotions to prevent itchiness. Dry skin can lead to a rash forming.
Don’t always assume your skin rashes are caused by fibromyalgia. Always take the time to go talk to your doctor or pharmacist. You could be having an allergic reaction instead. I bet just reading this article makes you itchy!