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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:I thought I would see if anyone else has this.
It is an allergy to the sun called Poly-Morphous Light Eruptions (PMLE).

Supposedly it developes in the mid-20's in people and lasts 7-10 years in most cases before it fades away again. I've had mine close to that long and it shows no signs of subsiding.

What it is...

The body treats UVA, UVB and solar Vitamin D as foreign entities, just as it would with insect venom, pet dander and pollen.

Any portions of skin exposed to the sun break out into small and *very* itchy hives within a couple of hours of exposure, which last about 2-3 days. Also along with it are headaches, nausea, dizziness, stuffy head...all the typical symptoms of an allergic reaction. We also get the joy of heightened occular photosensitivity.

This happens mostly in places with defined seasons, during the spring, but also during the summer until the skin "hardens", or becomes desensitized through the year. Then, next spring, it starts over.
Supposedly about 10-20% of people have it to varying degrees.

Mine doesn't diminish over the summer much, my skin must not harden. *shrug* It doesn't stop me. I am outdoors all the time, so absolutely avoiding the sun is not possible (not that I try). I do wear alot of sunscreen though and keep to the shade when it is there. But this is the worst summer I have had with it thusfar.
There is no real treatment for it, except in extreme cases. So benedryl, sunblock and tolerance are about all that can be done.

When I tell people I am allergic to the sun they seriously look at me like I am lieing, as if it is not possible.

Anyone else have this?


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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polythene


veteran
Location: London/ Surrey

Total posts: 1359
Posted:Not personally but one of my close friends from university does... she managed to survive travelling and camping right across the US with us last summer, like you, she won't be beaten smile

The optimist claims that we are living in the best of all possible worlds.
The pessimist fears this is true.

Always make time to play in the snow.

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Beth


Beth

Miss Whippy
Location: Cornwall & Oxford

Total posts: 1262
Posted:i get a reaction to the sun, especially in my hands and feet that is exactly as you have described, tiny horribly itchy hives, i thought it was just heat rash or prickly heat, i may have to look into PMLE tho.

Aim high and you'll know your limits, aim low and you'll never know how high you could have climbed.

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.:star:.
SILVER Member since Jan 2005

.:star:.

Pooh-Bah
Location: Bristol, United Kingdom

Total posts: 1785
Posted:My boyfriend suffers from something that sounds very like that. Although he absolutely refuses to go and see a doctor about it. What is it with men? they winge that they are 'dying' and then refuse to seek help!

I wouldn't wish it on anyone, it looks so painful and itchy


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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:You actually don't have to see a dr. for it.

I called and answered these questions...

1. Do you get small, itchy hives about 2 hours after sun exposure?
2. Do they go away after a couple of days without continued exposure?
3. Do you occassionally get headaches or other allergy symptoms with it?
4. Is it worse in Spring or early summer and then lessen over the season?
5. Do they ever turn into blisters or bleed?

If you, or your friends, answer like I did...
1. Yes
2. Yes
3. Yes
4. Yes
5. No

I was told..."Congratulations you have a sun allergy. Treatements are cold compressions or cool water on the hives, hydrocortizone for the itching, benedryl or other over the counter allergy medications to relieve symptoms. Year round wear at least a 15 sunblock no matter what and avoid the sun when possible. Best of luck to you."

I did a bunch more research and what I found is that there is nothing a doctor can do unless it is more extreme. The extreme versions are not really PMLE but other afflictions or reactions (for example some chemicals in sunscreen can cause a photochemical sun reaction on the skin of sensitive people eek )

I have a couple of really good websites on it if anyone wants them.

Nice to know I am not alone. And it is wildly itchy but worse are the headaches and ill feeling.

And Star, I have no idea but agree I have known some men very like that (not all mind you). But I can not say much, I usually only seek help when it is dire, I just don't whine about it! I just hate going to dr's (no offense to Dr. Lightning hug ).


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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Boo_Bunny
BRONZE Member since Mar 2005

Boo_Bunny

Sparkely arty Mormon rainbow fairy
Location: infront of you, United Kingdom

Total posts: 933
Posted:A couple of months ago, i started geting itchey hives on my arms and feet. I didnt know what it was, but it always went away with antihistimene and cold water. I get it about 4-5 times a week and it always goes away after a few hours.

After reading this i think it might possibley be PMLE.

Wow, ive never been alergic to anything before.
I'll have to do some research.


Property of Fine_Rabid_Dog

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Seb


Seb

Penguin of Mass Destruction and Tricky Bugger to the court of Claire the Askew
Location: Check behind you.

Total posts: 643
Posted:I've never even heard of it, must suck horrible goop though. I hope everyone with it clears up soon.

Chucks nuns
Property of mynci and blu_valley, and proud of it.

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newgabe
SILVER Member since Mar 2005

newgabe

what goes around comes around. unless you're into stalls.
Location: Bali, Australia

Total posts: 4030
Posted:Hmmm interesting.
My daughter gets little itchy bits like this sometimes.. and we live in a very high intensity sun zone. I'll have to see if she got it recently.. she just went from winter here to Ibiza summer.... but she definitely gets and reaction to sunscreen so that would not be a solution....


.....Can't juggle balls but I sure as hell can juggle details....

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Vixen
SILVER Member since Jan 2004

Vixen

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Oxfordshire/Wiltshire, United ...

Total posts: 3276
Posted:Ive had hives before so i can sympathise with what it must feel like (I have an allergy to silly string!)

Altho when someone asked me what it was i said i had scabies... ive never seen someone run so fast in my life! haha xxx


tHeReS gOoD aNd EvIl iN EaCh InDiViDuAl fIrE, iDeNtIfIeS nEeDs AnD fEeDs OuR dEsIrEs.

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Lycanthrope


Lycanthrope

The original drunk/stoned/vegetarian shapeshifter
Location: Blackhill, Australia

Total posts: 209
Posted:Written by: Vixen

Ive had hives before so i can sympathise with what it must feel like (I have an allergy to silly string!)

Altho when someone asked me what it was i said i had scabies... ive never seen someone run so fast in my life! haha xxx



ahhhhh
sometimes i dont know why i keep coming back to HOP,
it scares me *quivers*


Lycan:are you a citrus fruit?
Orange:no
Lycan:dam, i wanted to make citrus fruit pie.
*Lycan walks off completely unaware he has once again been outwitted by the intellectual orange*

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Josie-Posie
BRONZE Member since Mar 2005

Josie-Posie

member
Location: Clapham, London, United Kingdo...

Total posts: 82
Posted:I think my boyfriend gets it, he just gets an even red swelling on his face though in a kinda panda pattern. He never notices it though so it can't itch. I always just thought it was heat rash.... maybe not! The plot thickens!

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Vixen
SILVER Member since Jan 2004

Vixen

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Oxfordshire/Wiltshire, United ...

Total posts: 3276
Posted:haha... which bit scared you?? ,xxx

tHeReS gOoD aNd EvIl iN EaCh InDiViDuAl fIrE, iDeNtIfIeS nEeDs AnD fEeDs OuR dEsIrEs.

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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:Vixen, you are too funny! I have to remember that. ubblol Silly string huh? That's a new one to me as well.

For those who want more info...this is a great site..
http://www.intelihealth.com/IH/ihtIH/WSIHW000/9339/25934.html


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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Facelessjoker
BRONZE Member since Sep 2004

enthusiast
Location: Exeter, United Kingdom

Total posts: 249
Posted:Ayup I have this!! its a sort of mix with hives and eczema.

Weird ive been speaking to loads of peeps recently who have popped up saying they have a similar thing.

Sinse going to hospital a few summers ago when i was 12 for a skin infection, ive had reactions to sunlight and heat.

At first the dr told me that i was photosesitive and had to use suncream. I use factor 50 and it still didnt work. I realised it was the heat because I work in a very hot photo lab and it made me itch even in winter (which is when my eczema goes down and the hives disappear).

I went back to the dr a few days ago and have just been put on the anti histamine, Cetirizine. Its kicking in now but its turning me into a clumsy fool. hehe.



I really really hate it. It looks horrible, i get really upset about it because they start at my wrists and end at my shoulders, anywhere inbetween is covered in eczema. But this year ive started taking more serious action, i have to regulate my diet and im taking zinc suppliments (which helps eczema soo much- i wont ge tinto sciency stuff).

I also found out a few days ago im allergic to alcohol i came up real bad but only for 24 hours. after the alcohol left my system it went down.



But yeah, i have to spend the hottest hours inside, no argumets and stay in the shade as much as possible any other time. My eczema reacts to sweat and then the heat/sun makes my skin swell. SO i tend to go out in the evening only during the summer.

Love winter though biggrin



It makes me feel less sh!ty to know im not just a freak. :-P



Edit:

Id just like to say with reference to the hydrocortisone. I have it prescribed for eczema. If you get it over the counter, DONT use it too often, it relieves the itching but its a steroid cream and will thin your skin. Its the main reason for my skin infection and last year i had to wear bandages because i used it too much. And that only a mild cream.

smile

EDITED_BY: Facelessjoker (1121619761)


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crosby


newbie


Total posts: 1
Posted:I was hoping to find a way to meet another person with pmle and my askjeeves search led me here. thanks for posting about 50sunblock not working, even some french sunblock the dr gave me doesn't do more than give me ten minutes of sun exposure without the feeling of burning pain. also, I find that the heat that comes through the windshield is as triggering to my skin reaction as the sunlight is. i'm one of those pmle'ers that can't go to the mailbox and back without skin eruption and it usually takes about two weeks without any sun exposure for my skin to clear up. it started 21 months ago for me and i got many infections when the drs had me putting steroid cream after the next on my skin.

thanks also to the person who posted that we would all stop being allergic to the sun.

I smile at clouds, they block what I am allergic to. rain is ok too. but cloudy without rain is my fav.

crosby


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accents


newbie


Total posts: 1
Posted:I have solar urticaria. I take antihistamines and use a sunscreen that protects against visible light.

I have created a support group for sun sensitive people.
Our website is at Website: http://sun1.awardspace.com
br>Our forum is at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sun1/
br>To join, you need to join yahoo, then join our group. Please come by and say hi.

We are a support group for people who suffer from sun sensitivities such as solar urticaria, lupus, porphyria sun hives, photosensitivity, sun allergy, rheumatoid arthritis and more. We share our experiences and ways of coping and living with sun sensitivity such as sunscreens, clothing, hats, sunglasses and the effectiveness of medical treatments. Sun sensitivity shows usually shows up as a bad sunburn in a very short amount of time. Sun sensitivity can be due to drugs or medications, plants, phototoxicity and diseases.

See you there,
Accents

Moderators: We are a rare group, so we have a tough time finding each other. So I would appreciate you letting me post this message.


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Pele
BRONZE Member since Dec 2000

Pele

the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA

Total posts: 6193
Posted:Accents.. lol....
I am one of the moderators and I am the one who started the thread! lol

I think one of the more interesting things that happened with mine is after a peel from a slight burn on my shoulders, the pigments in my skin pretty much disappeared...so my shoulders are now camo with some spots lighter than others. I was a bit embarrassed at first about it, especially when I bellydance, but I am getting better about that. I am now finding it to be "unique".

This year so far, with it's incredibly warm spots in the middle of winter, has been hard. The brief sun exposure means I am not able to get in my "hardening" time. Bah!

Battling the headache yesterday from a weekend working a festival was unreal, but not enough to stop me from doing it again next weekend! lol


Pele
Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

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