In feb 2000, I was only 10 years old. I’ll never forget the burning, itching and stinging my whole body felt. Finding a pair of scissors in the bathroom, wearing just a towel, I used the sharpest point to scratch from head to toe. 20minutes later, I was found covered in blood and rushed to the doctors. It was then I was put on a 4 week course of antihistamines. My GP presumed I had an allergic reaction. After the course ended, everything seemed okay till 2001.
Play fighting with my older sister, I was then 12. Sat watching telly when my mum began panicking. ‘whats happened to your arm?!’ looking down I saw a perfect red, swollen handprint. It looked like I had been severly slapped, even burnt because it had came up in welts. A week later the constant itching returned. Once I scratched an area, it came up in a lumpy patch. You could clearly see where my nails had scratched. I was again taken to doctors and finally a diagnosis was made.
I was diagnosed with Dermatographic urticaria, also known as dermographism or ‘skin writing‘. Its a skin condition that affects 4-5% of the population. The skin easily becomes raised+inflamed when scratched, rubbed and slapped. Its causd by mast cells in tha surface of the skin releasing histamines without the prescense of antigens due the prescense of a weak membrane surrounding tha mast cells. The antihistamines releasd cause the skin to swell in the affectd area.
It’s a stressful skin condition to live with. Without taking antihistamines daily, I think i’d be lost and stuck. Its had me crying, I have scars from the itching and due to taking antihistamines, i’m constantly getting heartburn. I’m now 21 and happily married with a 18m old son. Sadly he has symptoms and will need testing. The only fun I have with my ‘writing skin’ is playing noughts+crosses on my arm to pass the time at the waiting room at doctors.
[warning]This post is an anonymous guest post*[/warning]