I suffer from Polymorphic Light Eruption or PLE, a sensitivity to sunlight.
I develop a red spot or two, usually now on my neck, which spreads and lasts a couple of weeks.
It itches and burns and can keep me awake at night, and it has developed impetigo on it a few times, which is very distressing.
I started to get a rash on my arms in the spring after Erin’s birth. It didn’t last long and wasn’t too itchy.
It was worse one year when we went to Provence when Erin was about 15 ; I remember having calomine cream on my arms.
I began to get rashes everywhere apart from my face and the palms of my hands and the soles of my feet during the peri menopause and since then the rashes are more frequent about every 6 to 8 weeks, and intense. A doctor dismissed my suggestion that it’s hormone related though.
My GP is baffled by it, prescribing anti fungal creams and E45 which do nothing, but he did refer me to the local hospital where I got my diagnosis.
All the dermatologist can say though, is to find what works for you.
What does work for me is La Roche Posay sunscreen and Imedeen tan optimiser tablets.
These tablets make such a difference, I had no rash while on an Australian holiday while taking them.
Unfortunately on my return home they were off the market for 2 years to be re formulated.
During this time I took Viridian SPF capsules as a substitute, but the frequency of the rashes got worse.
If I can’t sleep because of the itching I’m brain dead at work the next day!
I do take antihistamine tablets but they only give about 4 hours relief. Antihistamine cream and hydrocortisone ointment help too, but when it’s bad it’s just a case of existing through the itching and knowing that it will go at some point, for which I am grateful.
The Imedeen tablets came back on the market earlier this year, yay! As a result I had no rash after a nasty one in February, till I got a mild one on holiday in Canada in June.
Anyhow, 2 weeks ago I ordered more packs of tablets from Imedeen, you can only get them direct from them, not from Boots for some reason, and they are out of stock. They can’t tell me when they will be stocked and they can’t email me updates. I have to phone them again in 2 weeks. Very distressing, especially as it’s now sunny and warm!
So I’m back taking the Viridian capsules which Victoria Health supply very efficiently and promptly, I can’t praise that company enough.
I’ve since found out that a cousin of mine and her daughter get PLE too. Oh, for a cure!