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Patches on palms
Mar 11, 2001

Dear Dr,

During December 2000 I noticed that I have dark pink patches on the outside of both hand palms. The skin there feels sort of numb and on the left hand there seems to be a hard lump underneath. My doctor says that it's probably my sympatic nervous system that's been affected by neuropathy.

I am really concerned because these patches seems to be appearing on other areas on my palms as well. The first patches still looks very much the same and has not increased in size (approx 5x3cm). All my fingers are now red above the nails, but the redness seems confined to the first joint. A second patch also appeared on the fleshy part below the thumb on my left hand.

Is this caused by neuropathy and should I be concerned? My dr does not seem to be worried about it at all, but it worries me quite a lot. If it is caused by neuropathy, can it be reversed by meds?

Ian, South Africa

Response from Dr. Henry

You don't mention about your HIV status (are you infected, what is your T-cell count, etc). It is unclear what is the nature of the condition on your palms though it sounds somewhat unusual to be directly HIV related and to be located only in that spot. Perhaps a visit to a skin specialist would be helfful. I would want to know that you are not infected with syphylis. KH



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