What can I do to alleviate the itching?

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What can I do to alleviate the itching?

Postby Dief » Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:31 am

For the last couple of weeks, my husband's right forearm has been quite itchy - I often see him rubbing it, and I can tell it really annoys him, because scratching doesn't really seem to help. I've read that certain medications can help with the itch, but they seem to be quite drastic to me (antidepressants, anticonvulsants), so I am hoping there is some other way to alleviate this symptom. Have you experienced this MS itch, and if so, did you find something that worked for you? I would greatly appreciate any input, because I feel so bad for him, and I hate that I cannot do much to help him at the moment...
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Postby Wonderfulworld » Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:48 am

Hi Dief
don't let the common usages of the drugs put you off.

but they seem to be quite drastic to me (antidepressants, anticonvulsants), so I am hoping there is some other way to alleviate this symptom.
- sometimes they do sound like :o but they are often used at much lower doses than for the orignal purpose.

For example I use amitriptyline (Elavil) for the same itch your husband has - it moves all around my body, all the time, very annoying and it really used to interfere with sleep before I took the amitriptyline.

I currently take only 15mg at night for the itch, compared with a minimum of 75mg a person with depression would take. Your husband could start on a low dose (and give himself about 2 weeks to allow a settling-in period - the first 2 weeks he might feel sleepier than normal but it does let up after that) and perhaps lower it even further over time.

There is also a chance that this symptom might disappear in a while so your hubby might not have to take the meds forever but just while the itching is bad.
Hope that helps.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Concussus Resurgo
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
RR-MS dx 1998 and Coeliac dx 2003
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Copaxone, Cymbalta. EPO, Fish Oils, Vitamin D3 2000 IU daily, Cal/Mag/Zinc, Multivitamin/mineral, Co-Enzyme Q10, Probiotics, Milk Thistle.
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Postby mrbarlow » Wed Jun 15, 2011 2:24 am

I get this on and off. It waxes and wanes depending on how I feel. I find the best remedy is to sleep / keep cool.
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Postby Wonderfulworld » Wed Jun 15, 2011 7:02 am

MrBarlow you are lucky it wanes. I used to be the same until 2008 - it would come and go - but then I had a bad relapse and it set in long-term. At 15mg amitriptyline I still feel it sometimes, I might have to raise the dose to 20mg again, but it is still hanging around 3 years after it started. :(
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Concussus Resurgo
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
RR-MS dx 1998 and Coeliac dx 2003
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Copaxone, Cymbalta. EPO, Fish Oils, Vitamin D3 2000 IU daily, Cal/Mag/Zinc, Multivitamin/mineral, Co-Enzyme Q10, Probiotics, Milk Thistle.
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Postby mrbarlow » Wed Jun 15, 2011 8:29 am

Early days for me. I only started to get symptoms in spring 2010 and diagnosed last November
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Postby jimmylegs » Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:04 pm

hi dief, is the hubby on any kind of dietary supplement regimen right now? if so, could you describe?
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Postby lyndacarol » Wed Jun 15, 2011 4:51 pm

Dief, has your husband seen a physician about his itching problem? Perhaps there is an allergy? Or… I believe that itching can be a symptom of a liver problem; perhaps a physician can check this out.
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Re: What can I do to alleviate the itching?

Postby mlkos » Fri Sep 20, 2013 9:53 am

I also had it for a while, it was really annoying to the point that my wife moved out of the bedroom!!!
But it went away after a few weeks....
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Re: What can I do to alleviate the itching?

Postby mmpetunia » Fri Sep 20, 2013 10:36 pm

hi,

i too have experienced the MS itching. for me i would get it all over but it was practically intolerable on my legs. i still have pretty itchy legs. i don't take anything for it because i too hate the idea of symptom meds. i have tried a few things: 1) running icy cold water over my legs 2) steroid cream 3) a natural capsacin cream.

the icy water helps but its the least pleasant solution. it might not be as bad to run cold water over an arm but over both legs in winter. brrrrr!!! it did help though. your husband might try a cold compress or rubbing an ice cube on the area.

the steroid cream definitely helps, which has always made me wonder if i have a skin condition contributing to the itching. i use this very sparingly because steroids can cause thinning of the skin and other problems. when it gets unbearable i break out the 'roids. this may or may not work for your husband.

the capsacin cream also helped. the capsacin cream is a pain cream. you might be thinking "why the heck would i use that for itching?!" well, its because the nerve fibers that mediate the itching sensation are the same as those that mediate a pain sensation. the cream has an inhibitory effect on the C fiber nerves. therefore, it will inhibit both the pain sensation and itching. i did find it helpful although not 100%.
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Re: What can I do to alleviate the itching?

Postby HappyPoet » Sat Sep 21, 2013 9:19 am

Two deep, painful itches--named "Upper" and "Lower" so my husband knows which one to scratch--drive me crazy, and they are, of course, on my back where I can't reach. Wooden back-scratchers are everywhere in my house/cars.

Other than scratching Upper and Lower, nothing has helped in the 13 years I've tried different meds and tactics <sigh>. If medicinal marijuana helps (RSO oil which is high in CBDs that are not psychoactive), I'll report back.
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Re: What can I do to alleviate the itching?

Postby jimmylegs » Sat Sep 21, 2013 10:02 am

wow this is an oldie.
I used to get itches in my forearms that I couldn't scratch. SO ANNOYING. i realized folate intake was the only change, had levels tested. way high. so i originally identified high folate levels as being associated with my 'phantom itch'. my folate intake was not ridiculous, just the levels. i stopped taking my b vitamins for a while, itch went away.
over the years since then i have worked so hard on nutrient status and eventually i realized that i was taking the same daily dose of folate i had before, this time without experiencing the itch.
i can only assume that i had been missing a cofactor originally, that is now in place.
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