Health

DR ELLIE CANNON: If lotions and pills won’t ease my really itchy skin, what will?

DR ELLIE CANNON: If lotions and pills won’t ease my really itchy skin, what will?

I’m 85 and have had extreme itching over my complete physique for the previous three weeks. In some areas there’s a slight rash however the itching is equally dangerous the place there isn’t a rash. The physician prescribed prednisolone and a few lotion, neither of which made any distinction. The GP then added fexofenadine, once more with no impact. Ought to I ask for a blood check?

It isn’t unusual for individuals to go to their GP complaining of itchy pores and skin, typically with no rash showing. It may be attributable to many alternative pores and skin issues, akin to eczema and psoriasis, allergic situations akin to urticaria or infestations like scabies.

However a number of people who find themselves itchy haven’t any seen issues with their pores and skin. Non-skin situations signify round 1 / 4 of sufferers with itching and are extra doubtless in an aged affected person.

It may be a results of kidney or liver illness, each of which may be picked up on a blood check. Thyroid issues and blood issues also can set off itching. Though unlikely, it may be a symptom of a kind of blood most cancers akin to a number of myeloma or Hodgkin’s lymphoma. This is the reason it’s essential to have blood exams as a primary port of name.

At the moment’s reader is aged 85 and has developed extreme itching over their physique for the previous three weeks. She has requested the physician for a potential trigger for her downside and whether or not it may be mounted

Itching may also be a aspect impact of quite a few medicines together with blood strain drugs, diuretics, coronary heart medicine like digoxin, statins and opioid painkillers.

Hydroxyzine, an antihistamine accessible on prescription, might help to cease itching and aqueous lotions containing menthol can soothe the pores and skin. Steroids akin to prednisolone are unlikely to assist until there may be an allergic or inflammatory downside.

Wash in cool water with out bubble baths or perfumed merchandise. If the heating is on, a house can have very dry air, so inserting a moist towel on a radiator might help to humidify and add moisture to the pores and skin.

After having abdomen issues for a decade, I had a scan that confirmed my bowel was slim in a single space. A follow-up scan confirmed one among my valves isn’t closing totally. The GP prescribed omeprazole nevertheless it didn’t assist. I’ve tried over-the-counter drugs, natural dietary supplements and avoiding sure meals however nothing works. Please assist – I can’t sleep due to fixed gurgling and ache in my abdomen. I additionally undergo from irritable bowel syndrome, by the best way.

   

Extra from Dr Ellie Cannon for The Mail on Sunday…

ACID reflux is quite common. It occurs when acid and meals particles from the abdomen circulation again in direction of the meals pipe, inflicting a burning feeling within the chest and indigestion. This occurs when a valve within the higher a part of the digestive system connecting the meals pipe and abdomen doesn’t shut correctly. Omeprazole is used to scale back acid within the abdomen and subsequently reduce irritation from the abdomen contents rising up. So if the issue is a defective valve, the tablets received’t resolve it.

The worst factor you are able to do is lie in mattress, as meals travels within the fallacious course when you find yourself horizontal. Attempt sleeping extra upright, or to 1 aspect, quite than totally mendacity down. You could possibly additionally ask the GP if they might counsel over-the-counter treatment akin to Gaviscon.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a separate situation to reflux. It impacts the decrease a part of the digestive system and normally includes ache, constipation or free bowel actions.

There isn’t a remedy however there are particular remedies akin to peppermint oil capsules for bloating or anti-spasm medicines for ache.

Pointers advocate attempting a every day probiotic for a month to see if it helps any signs.

I’ve sort 2 diabetes which is handled with gliclazide. The dose within the morning retains my blood sugars at acceptable ranges in the course of the day, however my pre-breakfast readings are all the time excessive. Is it the fallacious treatment?

Remedy for sort 2 diabetes goals to thrust back long-term issues akin to coronary heart illness and kidney injury. Slightly than utilizing every day blood sugar targets, sort 2 diabetics are beneficial to have a blood check each three to 6 months to search for ranges of one thing referred to as Hba1C.

This tells us about blood sugar management long-term, quite than on one particular day.

Common checks of blood sugar ranges aren’t suggested for sort 2 diabetics until they’re on insulin or have common low-sugar episodes (hypoglycaemia).

Gliclazide is a diabetic support referred to as a sulfonylurea. It helps the pancreas produce extra insulin to carry down the extent of glucose within the blood. It additionally helps the physique’s cells use insulin extra successfully.

Normally, sulfonylureas could be given as a secondary treatment alongside metformin or as an preliminary beginning treatment. If there are points with the gliclazide, akin to if it’s not maintaining blood sugar ranges steady or it causes uncomfortable side effects, there are different choices.

Metformin is essentially the most generally provided drug – normally given first, depending on different well being points. There are additionally different sulfonylurea tablets.

Diabetes care additionally includes common eye, kidney and toes checks that are thought of when assessing which treatment is only.

Direct GP referrals save lives

From this month, GPs will be capable of refer sufferers instantly for most cancers checks and scans, bypassing specialists and rushing up diagnoses.

It’s a superb thought and one that ought to have come into power a very long time in the past.

I’ve lengthy thought that it’s about time we redefine the position of GPs amid hovering demand in virtually each healthcare space.

Many GP appointments with sufferers are comparatively pointless – a waste of our time and theirs. Usually we’re merely a middle-man, connecting them with specialists who can provide exams. Or we see sufferers with coughs, colds, aches and pains that we are able to do little about – the skilled they want is normally a pharmacist or physiotherapist.

So something we are able to do to hurry up diagnoses and remedy for sufferers – and save useful GP time – is a winner.

Intercourse infections don’t solely catch out the younger… 

Do you may have a query for Dr Ellie?

Electronic mail [email protected] or write to Well being, The Mail on Sunday, 2 Derry Avenue, London, W8 5TT.

Dr Ellie can solely reply in a normal context and can’t reply to particular person circumstances, or give private replies. When you’ve got a well being concern, all the time seek the advice of your personal GP.

Would you be shocked if I informed you sexually transmitted infections are hovering within the over-65s? Properly, they’re. Since 2017, circumstances of gonorrhoea and chlamydia on this group rose by 20 per cent, in response to a research by the Native Authorities Affiliation revealed final week.

I wasn’t stunned in any respect by the information – it’s a pattern that GPs have observed for some time. Many of those individuals are newly single in midlife after divorce or the loss of life of a companion, and have been enthusiastically utilizing relationship apps and web sites.

But at this age, companions typically don’t think about using condoms – as they suppose contraception isn’t required.

It’s not unusual for me to see girls who’ve been struggling signs for a while, and put it all the way down to myriad different issues, akin to menopausal signs. I’ve to interrupt it to them: they’ve picked up an STI. In fact that is nothing to be ashamed of, however typically, they’re dumbfounded.

I’m to know if anybody has expertise of this – and the way you had been handled once you sought assist or recommendation. Write and inform me on the e mail handle [email protected]

Since 2017, cases of gonorrhoea and chlamydia in the over 65s rose by 20 per cent, according to a study by the Local Government Association published last week

Since 2017, circumstances of gonorrhoea and chlamydia within the over 65s rose by 20 per cent, in response to a research by the Native Authorities Affiliation revealed final week

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