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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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What causes severe itching behind the knees?

My legs are itchy. The back of my knees are extremely itchy. Doesn t seem to be poison ivy or such things cuz it doesn t spread or ooze like they do. But the one knee has been itched enough to toughen the skin. Making it leathery like. If I itch anywhere on my legs tho, it feels like I m itching that itch so my legs are covered in scratches and nicks that don t seem to be healing. I eliminated staph by the fact it is a neutral smell and seems to heal slowly if I don t itch it but I tend to itch in my sleep. No noticeable bug bites. Been like this for 10 days. I am caught between exzema, allergic reaction (high pollen, I m allergic to Hickory with 3 in back yard) and the unknown. Taken some allergy med Luke Sudafed and used different lotions, AC vinegar and HC creams. Nothing seems to be more then a temporary relief. Hoping it isn t something worse (but trying to not be mother here).
Mon, 30 Jul 2018
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General & Family Physician 's  Response
Hello and Welcome to ‘Ask A Doctor’ service. I have reviewed your query and here is my advice.

Itching behind the knees can be due to allergy(food) but commonly its due to psoriasis or dermatitis (herpetiformis dermatitis - caused due to gluten sensitivity). Take antihistamines, steroids, sulfones, dapsone & anti inflammatory medication & avoid scratching. Take gluten free diet. Visit a dermatologist & get examined. Get investigations done like Skin biopsy, immunofluorescence test, blood tests to check for the antibodies & intestinal biopsy if required to rule out other causes (Neurodermatitis, etc.) In the meantime try taking gluten free diet.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further.
Dr. Nupur K.
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