peeling fingertips
August 9, 2006 10:51 AM   Subscribe

Why is the skin peeling from my index fingertips?

I am not really a manicure person and I belive that this related to the manicure I got for my sister's wedding. A couple of days afterward the skin on all my fingertips went kind of smooth, as though I had no finger prints, and dry. I thought it weird but was too busy to pay much attention. Then yesterday, the skin blistered on the index fingers ( the blisters did not hurt) and popped, and peeled easily and painlessly away from my fingertips. The only time that this has hurt was while was chopping garlic for last night's dinner.
My PCP is kind of useless, and I don't want to pay her $70 so she can shake her head and say "I dunno." Also, my sister said that this sometimes happens to her brother-in-law when he's under a lot of stress, as I have been lately.
Has this happened to anyone else out there?
posted by Sara Anne to Health & Fitness (7 answers total)
It's kind of odd, but that always happens when my younger brother gets strep throat. They always start to peel 2 days before getting any other symptoms without fail.
posted by coolin86 at 11:30 AM on August 9, 2006

Also, see the previously asked question.
posted by bibbit at 11:52 AM on August 9, 2006

Best answer: boy howdy do i know about this.
(sorry i do not know how to link properly.)

i have had the same symptoms, on & off, for a few years. comes and goes. after trying everything to cure it myself (cortisone ointment, antifungal ointment, anti-cracking cream, regular ol' moisturizer), i finally went to the dermatologist. of course she told me that there's no cure & it's related to stress. which set off my bullshit detector. but she gave me a name for the problem: dyshidrosis (good wikipedia page w/semi-gross photo is here: she also gave me a steroid cream.

you may not have this condition, but i did learn that skin can do some crazy things in reaction to irritants, be they allergens or harsh chemicals or, i guess, stress.

and for what it's worth, i never had this problem till i was about 24 yrs old. it cropped up out of nowhere.
posted by apostrophe at 11:53 AM on August 9, 2006

If the blisters were itchy, then it would sound quite a bit like the dishidrotic eczema when I get stressed out. (It may be from exposure to various things too, my PCP and I haven't quite nailed it down).

This either goes away in time or can be dealt with via a topical steroid cream. Benadryl sometimes helps in my case, also.
posted by divka at 11:53 AM on August 9, 2006

It's kind of odd, but that always happens when my younger brother gets strep throat. They always start to peel 2 days before getting any other symptoms without fail.

This makes sense. The same bacteria that causes strep throat also causes staph infections that are often characterized by peeling skin (the body's amazing defense).
posted by jengineer at 1:26 PM on August 9, 2006

Do you use any sort of moisturiser? Maybe you should.
posted by oxford blue at 5:46 PM on August 9, 2006

I had surgery on a finger in 2003 - the incision is 3/4 of an inch long, but the skin on the entire finger peeled. The doctor said that fingers and hands tend to peel when they're injured. My mom had a lot of skin peel when she had carpal tunnel surgery.
posted by IndigoRain at 7:44 PM on August 9, 2006

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