Saturday, February 12, 2011

This Itching Is Driving Me Nuts!

I can't stop scratching! My arms, back, feet, stomach, scalp - you name it, I've scratched it until it's red and sore. I've taken to wearing my pajamas inside-out, because the tiniest bit of rough edge along the seams is too itchy. My family can't stand it and neither can I.

I have pruritus, which is an extrahepatic manifestation of Hep C. According to a fact sheet at
... Pruritus is one of the most common symptoms reported by people with hepatitis C (20%), but is more commonly found in people with advanced liver disease and cirrhosis. Pruritus is itching that may be localized to a specific part of the body such as hands and feet, but it can also be a generalized itching all over the body. Some people even report that it feels like their internal organs itch. Pruritus can be related to high bilirubin levels, autoimmune disease or dry skin, and can be a side effect of treatment. Use of moisturizing lotions, oatmeal baths or lotions, antihistamines, and cortisone creams and opiate drugs can help.
I scratched myself all night, so I'm going to slather on some moisturizer and try to take a nap now. Fingers crossed.

Photo by Orrling


Something Happened Somewhere Turning said...

I remember when I was a kid my mom used to put calamine lotion on us kids when we had the chicken pox. Maybe that might help. Sounds terrible. Having severe psoriasis, I know what it's like to itch all the time. Up until recently I was taking Enbrel injections to fight it and then it quit working so I am back to scratching and using topical solutions. It's awful.

Jay said...

I feel your pain! It's worse at night, but my family goes to bed before me so I can scratch all I want without bothering them.