Note to fellow Celiacs: How to reduce symptoms – especially rash – if accidentally eating gluten!

First, excerpts from Healthline.com for “What Causes Dermatitis Herpetiformis?”:

  • From the sound of the name, many people think this rash is caused by some form of the herpes virus. This isn’t the case, as it has nothing to do with herpes. Dermatitis herpetiformis occurs in people with celiac disease. Celiac disease (also called celiac sprue, gluten intolerance, or gluten-sensitive enteropathy) is an autoimmune disorder characterized by intolerance to gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley. It’s also sometimes found in oats that have been processed in plants that handle other grains.
  • According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), 15 to 25 percent of people with celiac disease have DH. Celiac disease can also cause intense abdominal pain, constipation, nausea, and vomiting. People with DH typically don’t have any of the intestinal symptoms. However, even if they don’t experience any intestinal symptoms, 80 percent or more of people with DH still have intestinal damage, especially if they eat a diet that’s high in gluten, according to the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA).
  • The intestinal damage and rash are due to the reaction of gluten proteins with a special kind of antibody called immunoglobulin A (IgA). Your body makes IgA antibodies to attack gluten proteins. When IgA antibodies attack gluten, they damage the parts of the intestines that allow you to absorb vitamins and nutrients. This sensitivity to gluten usually runs in families.
  • The structures formed when IgA attaches to gluten then enter the bloodstream. They begin to clog small blood vessels, especially those in the skin. White blood cells are attracted to these clogs. The white blood cells release a chemical called “complement” that causes an itchy, blistery rash.

What works well for me might not work as well for other Celiacs, but here is how I reduce the symptoms – especially the painful burning stinging rash – if accidentally eating food that contains gluten or other ingredients causing the same problems…

Also, if you accidentally go off of your gluten-free diet, or deliberately make one exception – believing that one time and small amount can’t be too harmful, then think again. There is no forgiveness – such a mistake can result in painful symptoms – especially the rash – lasting two weeks. I learned this the hard way, when I made an exception. I got the McDonald’s Big Breakfast (no pancakes). No problem with the eggs, hash browns, and sausage, but the biscuit sent me to health hell for 2 weeks. Making the mistake of eating food I thought to “obviously” be gluten-free, and not carefully reading the ingredients label, cost me another 2 weeks of suffering.

It’s an internal problem – the cause of the rash is internal. So it is better to treat it by internal means to reduce it. Most topical treatments, I’ve discovered, make it worse or have no effect. However, applying a thin film of Petroleum Jelly to the rash can ease the suffering and speed up the recovery. Taking a hot shower or soaking in a hot bath or applying a washcloth soaked in hot water can help force the chemical “complement” out of the skin, like sweating it out, and then you can wash it off. The result then is dried out skin, on which a thin layer of Petroleum Jelly can help heal the damaged skin.

Although it is an internal problem, I’ve discovered some kinds of insect bites can trigger the celiac rash, same as if consuming gluten! Apply hydrogen peroxide to the bites or stings. Take a hot shower to sweat out what the bite or sting left behind in the skin. Apply only to the bite or sting the new “Extra Strength Anti-Itch Cream” containing double the usual 1% active ingredient – at 2% Diphenhydramine hydrochloride plus 0.1% Zink acetate. Apply a thin layer of Petroleum Jelly to the rash forming around and from the insect bite or sting. If it is the scabies mite, then those mites can be more effectively killed by spraying Hot Shot Flea, Tick & Lice bug spray – active ingredient same as the prescribed cream to kill scabies – Permethrin. The scabies rash is so similar to the celiac rash that the two have been misdiagnosed one for the other, but what’s really bad is when a patient actually has both at the same time! If using the bug spray instead of the prescription cream, leave it on for only an hour, at about sunrise and sunset when the mites are on the surface of the skin instead of inside to kill them when greater exposed. Then take the hot shower to wash off the bug spray and dead mites. And then apply the anti-itch cream and the Petroleum Jelly.

For internal treatment of the celiac rash I recommend taking two kinds of antihistamine – in particular Chlorpheniramine Maleate 2mg every 3 to 4 hours, and Loratadine 10mg when going to bed to sleep for the night. The normal limit for Loratadine is 10mg per 24 hours. However, for extreme cases and at onset it can be safe to take an extra dose in 12 hours after the first, or sooner if rash returns to same level before taking the first dose. I found 10mg of Loratadine last 10 hours for reducing the celiac rash. It requires the additional intake of Chlorpheniramine Maleate to further reduce the rash and to keep it down. Likewise, when taking the Chlorpheniramine Maleate every 3 to 4 hours, also take one Ibuprofen 200mg tablet to help reduce inflammation – works better than Aspirin. The kind of Chlorpheniramine Maleate I buy is the Allergy Relief tablets that include Acetaminophen 325mg and Phenylephrine HCI 5mg. It is best to take these drugs with a meal or snack, or at least with a cup of milk if you can tolerate drinking milk. I drink milk to treat stomach ulcers. Then, if there is stomach pain, like taking Alka-Seltzer take one teaspoonful for baking soda mixed into a half cup of water – then sit, or rest on your left side until the pain subsides – resting on right side can make it worse or reduce effectiveness. Do not take acid blocker or reducer when taking the Loratadine, which can reduce its effectiveness.

For bronchial asthma I take Primatene Tablets – Ephedrine HCI USP 12.5mg as needed. I discovered Ephedrine can help reduce the celiac rash, especially one dose at start of day and a second dose about 8 hours later with lunch or a snack. If necessary, a third dose can be taken with dinner, but I do not recommend taking a dose just before going to bed to sleep for the night. Some hospital emergency rooms treat anaphylaxis shock and resulting rash with much higher doses of Ephedrine. Most pharmacies now stock Ephedrine behind the counter – you have to show ID and sign for them.

Of course the best treatment is to not consume gluten in the first place. BEWARE, some foods noted to be “Gluten Free” might not be totally free of gluten and might contain other ingredients that can likewise damage the small intestine and trigger the celiac rash. Other ingredients are not common to all cases like gluten is, and may be different for each person. It’s better to eat foods that never had gluten in them, than those that have been converted to be free of gluten. What’s amazing and surprising to me are foods containing wheat that I’d not have guessed contain wheat. Worse, when one brand does and another does not – for example Hormel Chili does and the Wolf Chili brand does not. Always carefully check ingredients listed on packages. Never assume one is safe.

Is there a food that can help reduce celiac rash and other symptoms? YES! Onions. I’ve recently started to buy already chopped and frozen onions – then heat and add desired amount to food. Excerpted from Care2.com some health benefits of onions, with brief notations for how a few of those help me:

  • The phytochemicals in onions along with their vitamin C help improve immunity.
  • Onions contain chromium, which assists in regulating blood sugar. [I have fluctuating low blood glucose, what I refer to as Fluctuating Blood Glucose Balance Disorder, plus depression with low glucose and slightly manic with high glucose for Bipolar II – more depressive than manic.]
  • For centuries, onions have been used to reduce inflammation and heal infections. [This can include reducing inflammation and rash caused by Celiac Disease – damage and symptoms caused by eating food with gluten.]
  • Do you enjoy sliced onions with your food? If yes, rejoice! Raw onion lowers the production of bad cholesterol (LDL), thus keeping your heart healthy.
  • A powerful compound called quercetin in onions is known to play a significant role in preventing cancer.
  • Got stung by a honeybee? Apply onion juice on the area for immediate relief from the pain and burning sensation. {This can include other kinds of insect bites including scabies and bedbugs as well as mosquitoes.]
  • Onions scavenge free radicals, thereby reducing your risk of developing gastric ulcers. [at age 61 now I’ve had a long history of bleeding stomach ulcers.]
  • Those bright green tops of green onions are rich in Vitamin A, so do use them often.
  • Researchers from Cornell studied 11 onion varieties, and found that shallots and Western yellow onions were the healthiest for their phenolic and flavonoid content.

Celiac Disease is genetic. My sister had it before she died. Celiac disease is a serious autoimmune disorder that can occur in genetically predisposed people where the ingestion of gluten leads to damage in the small intestine. It is estimated to affect 1 in 100 people worldwide. Two and one-half million Americans are undiagnosed and are at risk for long-term health complications. When people with celiac disease eat gluten (a protein found in wheat, rye and barley), their body mounts an immune response that attacks the small intestine. These attacks lead to damage on the villi, small fingerlike projections that line the small intestine, that promote nutrient absorption. When the villi get damaged, nutrients cannot be absorbed properly into the body. Celiac disease is hereditary, meaning that it runs in families. People with a first-degree relative with celiac disease (parent, child, sibling) have a 1 in 10 risk of developing celiac disease. After going on a gluten-free diet it can take 2 years for the damage to the small intestine to completely heal, up to 2 months for visible symptoms including scars from rash to subside.

If you have Celiac Disease, which damages the small intestine, a previously unidentified symptom and damage is the development of an Inaugural Hernia, which is NOT a coincidence! An inguinal hernia happens when contents of the abdomen—usually fat or part of the small intestine—bulge through a weak area in the lower abdominal wall. The area of the lower abdominal wall is also called the inguinal or groin region.

When I began to experience onset of celiac symptoms including the rash, I developed a hernia in my right groin while experiencing the severe pain of the celiac rash and bleeding stomach ulcers. I tailor made a hernia truss from elastic bands and held together with snaps, looking like a jock strap but without the cup, to help hold the hernia in place internally – it otherwise pops out when standing and walking. When resting on my back it can slip back inside or be pushed back inside. However, wearing the truss can cause the hernia to shift to center to then invade the scrotum – the right testis. Uncomfortable, but usually not painful. Normal pain can be on a scale of 1 to 10. Above normal pain is what I refer to as tortuous pain on a higher 1 to 10 scale level. I was experiencing fluctuating tortuous pain in my stomach when the hernia first formed. Below normal pain is the level I refer to as discomfort – feels bad but does not hurt, and that has been the condition of the hernia most of the time. If I leave it alone, it tends to settle, but can be aggravated by various activities – and then can hurt.

The hospital emergency room I went to refused to treat it because in present condition an operation to fix it is considered to be Elective – not covered by insurance, compared to Emergency – covered by insurance. Otherwise at least $3,000 to fix it. Some of those operations using mesh to fix hernias have led to problems, and recently TV has been flooded with commercials for class action law suits for hernia mesh malfunctions.

Because my hernia involves the small intestine – damaged by gluten, and gluten-free diet can heal the small intestine in 2 years, it is my belief that the same diet with additional special care might help to heal the damaged tissue resulting in the hernia vanishing – when the abdominal wall is able to prevent it from popping out.

Additional information added Friday morning 19 May 2017:

NUTRITION! NUTRITION! NUTRITION! I forgot to include this in yesterday’s posting (above). Keep in mind, the damage to the small intestine reduces the ability to take in nutrients, minerals and vitamins, etc. I have determined, in my case, liquids are more effective (more easily absorbed) than solids or soft food. I recommend Boost nutritional drink (about $9 to $10 for a 6-pack), and Carnation Instant Breakfast Essentials Complete Nutritional Drink (about $4 to $6 for a box of 10 packets). Those have kept me alive more than any other beverage or food options. I usually feel noticeable energy improvement within an hour, sometimes a few minutes. The new packages of Boost note on the front that they are Gluten-Free.

Special Report by Jim Lantern in Norman Oklahoma

LANTERN TIMEGLASS JOURNAL

Thursday morning – 18 May 2017

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Categories: Food, Health | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments

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15 thoughts on “Note to fellow Celiacs: How to reduce symptoms – especially rash – if accidentally eating gluten!

  1. Reblogged this on "OUR WORLD".

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  2. Jim, please be careful when you’re taking ibuprofen and your allergy medication at the same time, acetaphetamine is what is in Tylenol, don’t mix the two,if you need the ibuprofen take Benadryl and ibuprofen will thin the blood… Blessings

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    • I meant ( Aicetaminophen) …. Stupid spell checker 😣

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      • It did it to me again…😣 see

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        • Thanks. Will do. As I write this, tornadoes on the ground here in Oklahoma west of OKC headed northwest in western Oklahoma – I’m in Norman about 30 minutes south of OKC on I-35. Expecting storms to reach Oklahoma City, Moore, and Norman area in about 2 hours. Watching live coverage on http://kfor.com/on-air/live-streaming/

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          • Good thing my health happens to be much better today and now… New storms popped up – arriving sooner than expected – first wave on edge of Norman now 5:10pm CT. Expecting heavy rain, flooding, hail, at least damaging winds but not a tornado so far although this line of storms is intensifying. Sheltering in place. Massive tornadoes elsewhere moving across Oklahoma as I write this. Watching live coverage on http://kfor.com/on-air/live-streaming/

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    • “If you need additional pain relief, you can combine aspirin, naproxen, or ibuprofen with acetaminophen. However, do not take aspirin, naproxen, or ibuprofen within 8-12 hours of each other. Also, watch out for pain medications that might be included in combination products such as those used for cough and cold.” – safemedicine.com

      “Ibuprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). … Diphenhydramine and ibuprofen is a combination medicine used to treat occasional insomnia associated with minor aches and pains. Diphenhydramine and ibuprofen is not for use in treating sleeplessness without pain, or sleep problems that occur often.” – drugs.com

      “It is most likely that you are taking one of the non sedating anti histamines for your allergies. … For example, there is generally no reason that you couldn’t take a non sedating anti histamine and also take common pain killers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen.” – zocdoc.com

      “Acetaminophen and diphenhydramine is a combination medicine used to treat headache, runny nose, sneezing, watery eyes, and pain or fever caused by allergies, the common cold, or the flu. Acetaminophen and diphenhydramine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.” – drugs.com

      I normally take Excedrin for headaches and some other kinds of pain. It is the only product that consistently knocks down my migraine headaches and occasional ocular migraines. It contains Aspirin, which improves the flow of blood and delivery of the second ingredient Acetaminophen to reduce the pain. The third ingredient Caffeine helps to restore the energy burned up by the pain. It is pain that burns up energy more than anything else. However, experiencing anger and/or fear can also burn up nearly as much energy too – the surge of the “fight or flight” reaction. Aspirin by itself makes my migraines worse. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) by itself only dulls the pain – takes the sharp edge off of it. Caffeine by itself can help reduce pain and restore mental clarity, and it has sometimes knocked down mild asthma attacks.

      In the past it was easy to get more effective prescription pain relievers – prescribed by the doctor and purchased at a pharmacy, or provided at a hospital. Now there is the issue of addiction to some kinds of pain relievers when not properly controlled – how much and when and how often. Problem is, the Justice Department has put more importance on addiction than on justified pain relief. Doctors, pharmacies, clinics, and hospitals are threatened with legal action – treated as criminals – could be fined and spend time in prison – as if like illegal drugs. Also, hit with lawsuits for addiction. Therefore, most have backed off on such pain relievers. When I was at the hospital ER in February 2017 to try to get help for my bleeding ulcers, they refused to treat the pain – only suggesting that I go back home and take a Tylenol. Aspirin can make the bleeding worse – so I have to be careful with using Excedrin to treat my migraines at risk of making stomach ulcers worse.

      I’ve only had one overdose. I had a severe dislocation of my right shoulder and arm in an accident at work when I lived in Dallas in 1989. I was taken to Dedman Memorial Hospital. First contact in the ER gave me a dose of morphine but didn’t record it. A second dose during x-rays as I was still in severe pain, the second contact not knowing about the first dose. Then still in pain when the doctor put everything back in place I was given a third dose, the doctor not knowing about the previous two doses. Stopped my breathing and heart of a couple of minutes. I had an out-of-body experience. I saw nurses and doctors shouting at a patient on a table to “Breathe! Breathe! Breathe!” I stepped closer to see who is on the table. Then seeing it is me I was so shocked that I took in a deep breath of air – resulting in me back in my body and briefly awakening.

      Regarding Primatene – the tablets are still sold without a prescription but kept behind the counter of pharmacies, requiring showing of ID and signing for them. That’s because of abuse by drug dealers to use the ingredient to make illegal drugs. Primatene Mist inhalers were banned by the government under the false claim that an ingredient damages the ozone. That ingredient if entering the atmosphere can damage the ozone. However, the inhaler forces all ingredients into the lungs, so none of it enters the atmosphere – not present when exhaling. No reasonable priced product replaced it, so the government took away an affordable means of relief used by many people with bronchial asthma. Then what showed up on the market amounted to price gouging.

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      • ☺👍

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        • There is also the “placebo effect” – as a “beneficial effect, produced by a placebo drug or treatment, that cannot be attributed to the properties of the placebo itself, and must therefore be due to the patient’s belief in that treatment.” Discovered during WWII when they would run out of morphine to treat wounded – gave them fake shots to make them believe they were getting morphine – some of them reacting with relief loss of pain as if they had been given a real shot of morphine. Since then, this has expanded to some prescription drugs. It is legal to sell such fake drugs as placebos, and to not inform the patients – in some cases 50% of those tested believed they were given the real drug and improved. Then comes today’s greed in health care and its vulture culture. A placebo cost a tiny fraction of the real drug. Improved profit. They are banking on the placebo effect to make up the difference when mixing fakes and real. I’m not so easily hoodwinked. Some prescription drugs that should have helped me and have in the past then had no effect at all. It has not been legal to sell over-the-counter nonprescription placebos because that would amount to fraud – not protected by the law like prescription placebos. I suspect some drugs over-the-counter nonprescription are now placebos anyway to make more money. This has for some drugs caused me to turn to old home remedies, natural remedies. Also, to turn to religion, spiritual treatment, to seek God’s healing and pain relief. Now that is true believing, not a placebo effect. God doesn’t do placebos. Sometimes the help from God is not what was expected, and amounts to a revelation for a natural treatment or a reminder for an old home remedy. Last time I went to a doctor I think his name must have been Frank N. Stein, and he only tightened the bolts on my neck. [Humor.] I do believe the body is like a car, and the soul is the driver.

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  3. Storms update 8pm CT. Bizarre frequent lightning over Norman has been messing with the power. Although some thunder of course, the lightning has been close enough to hear a kind of screaming sound in the air outside. Alternating between dead clam and frequent wind gusts at least 60 mph. Some heavy rain but no flooding. The sky is a strange color. almost orange, making me think of Mars. This is the third wave of storms tonight – more coming later. Tinker AFB just reported 65 mph wind. I hear emergency sirens in Norman now – police or EMS or fire – probably wind damage and power lines down. Battery good on my laptop, and Cox cable for Wi-Fi is still working. Who needs fiction? The world has gone crazy and we are living it.

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    • Storms moving out of area 9pm CT – end of third wave. More later tonight. Reported by KFOR 4-Warn, 70 mph winds in Norman snapped off 10-inch trees branches and poles.

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  4. “Hit by lightning 7 times . . . God keeps reminding me I’m lucky to be alive.” https://youtu.be/zHTP3S6feYo

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  5. The kind of health care I got up to age 30 was much better than any since then and now at age 61. https://youtu.be/0VkrUG3OrPc

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  6. NUTRITION! NUTRITION! NUTRITION! I forgot to include this in yesterday’s posting. Keep in mind, the damage to the small intestine reduces the ability to take in nutrients, minerals and vitamins, etc. I have determined, in my case, liquids are more effective (more easily absorbed) than solids or soft food. I recommend Boost nutritional drink (about $9 to $10 for a 6-pack), and Carnation Instant Breakfast Essentials Complete Nutritional Drink (about $4 to $6 for a box of 10 packets). Those have kept me alive more than any other beverage or food options. I usually feel noticeable energy improvement within an hour, sometimes a few minutes. The new packages of Boost note on the front that they are Gluten-Free.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I really enjoyed your post! What I found most interesting actually is all the positive information on onions. I used to HATE onions. Now I crave them all the time and love them! Our bodies know exactly what we need.
    Thanks for sharing! It’s always helpful receiving information from others who understand celiac disease.

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