|Itchy Dry Facial, Chest and hands
Apr 30, 2013
I have extremely dry itchy skin around my face, and chest and arms. I am on lamivudine efavirenz tenofovir, I started treatment last year in Sept. My viral load is low and I am healthy. I take my meds at night (not always at the same exact time, but everyday) I am experiencing extreme itchiness. My face at times breaks out in terrible rashes. My skin tone has decreased drastically. I have very dark almost black patches and normal chocolately tone. I am extremely ashy at times and at times I am even toned. The only consistency is the extreme itchiness which will subside after 3-4 hours and at times after I have used antihistamine I have inconsistent sleep patterns and I use emulsifying ointment to shower and as a lotion. My dad has eczema but I never had any skin issues till beginning of last year when my skin started to itch extremely and my eyebrows fell off completely. My eyebrows have since grown back but I am noticing they are falling off again. I live in Cape Town, the weather is very extreme: either too cold or too hot. We are just about to begin winter.
| Response from Dr. Henry
Rashes as you describe can be extremely frustrating to manage. Rashes are common in HIV+ patients. It is possible that the rash may be due to one of your HIV medications in which case a planned switch to an alternative regimen may be considered. In most cases there is another skin condition causing the problem (ie severe seborrhea, eczema, folliculities and other conditions) so a proper diagnosis (often assisted by consultation with a dermatologist/skin specialist) is key to improving treatment options. A few of the problems are worsened (darker skin) by exposure to sunlight so minimizing UV light exposure is sometimes a key measure to improve the skin color. KH
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