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Have had shingles. Rashes appeared on back and chest. On medication for scabies. Any ideas?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 1978
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54 year old male. 6' 175 lbs in good health. I had shingles about a year ago. About a month ago I started breaking out with what looks like shingles on my back and has spread a bit around my the sides toward my chest. Some on the upper arms as well. What is different is that this itches a lot and it is all over my back, not following a nerve like it did a year ago, also no pain, just really itchy. I went to my doctor for a sore (bug bite?) on my leg that has not healed yet, four months ago. He is still looking into that (testing for MRSA) and had him look at my back. He suggested scabies and prescribed a lotion as well as a spray for clothes, bed, and furniture. My partner suffers no symptoms nor has the lotion helped at all. I also tried benadryl for a few days on my own and again, no help. I plan on going back to the doctor once I hear back from him on the sore but until then, searching for solutions. Any ideas?
Posted Fri, 21 Dec 2012 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 3 hours later
Thanks for the query.
It can not be shingles as shingles doesn't involve whole back and never involves both sides of back.
It is not Scabies as it doesn't manifest this way.
Liver diseases,thyroid dysfunction,anemia etc may cause itchy back so you may rule them out by getting investigated for them.
Pets in home like cats and dogs may also cause itchy back.Cats may cause cat flea and dogs may cause dog dandruff.
The most likely cause could be due to dry skin which is very common.

Take the following measures if the skin is dry.

Moisturize your self well and do it right after the bath so that moisture of bath can be trapped.
Don't bath with with hot water.use only warm water.
Humidity helps in dry skin so use humidifier in your house.Central  heating leaves your skin dry.
Avoid using harsh soaps.
Wear cotton fabrics.
Use anti itching medicines ( anti histaminics ) in the night.

If these measures don't help,you are advised to consult a dermatologist for the solution.

I hope to have answered your query however you may revert to me for any further query.
Best of luck
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