Tuesday, March 03, 2009 Country Girl, Community Member, asks

Q: dry itchy skin is driving me crazzzzyyyyy!!

dry itchy skin.......i'm just about to go crazy! i wake up at night clawing my arms, legs, and chest. is this just part of ra or is there an underlying cause?  i have patches of dry, red spots on my arms.  help!

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Answers (3)
Lene Andersen, Health Guide
3/ 7/09 12:35pm

Ellen has some very good suggestions about what could be causing your itchiness, but I want to add one thing. Are you on a biologic for your RA, such as Enbrel, Humira or Remicade? In my experience, they make everything extremely dry, including your skin and can cause rashes. When I was on Enbrel, I had rashes everywhere that were the itchiest thing I've ever had, but to me, the benefits outweighed the rashes. When I switched to Humira, they mostly disappeared (not entirely, but mostly). Drink lots of water and find a good moisturizer - Aveeno is terrific - and go for fragrance free products, just in case you're sensitive to scent. You may also want to make an appointment to see your doctor to get it checked out.

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peonyred, Community Member
7/ 6/09 1:41pm

Me too!!!  Saw your post and  yes, scratch scaratch! I have RA but no rash  just itch ,which means skin bleeds when I scratch--mine is mainly legs, feet then arms. Please have you found an answer yet? Hope so!  Good luck.

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Pamela, Community Member
3/ 1/11 9:48am

Yes, me too.  Diagnosed with RA last year (I am now 59) and am on Malaria meds to prevent deteriorating joints (anyone else on this?).  I have had the RA for several years (now looking back of course).  I have also have terrible itching on arms, which now is spreading to shoulders and scalp. First Ithought bedbugs (uuuggg - negative, then haymites (as I work with and ride horses).  There are spots on my arms that now bleed from sctatching so smuch.  I find the anti itch lotion to help somewhat.  My skin is get dry and blotchy from the constant scratching.  Have just seen these blogs about the itch being RA related.  Looking forward to more info.

Thanks 

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By Country Girl, Community Member— Last Modified: 06/18/12, First Published: 03/03/09