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  #1  
Old 08-21-2008, 12:52 PM
RedRosesForMe RedRosesForMe is offline
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Why does my armpit itch so badly?

I certainly hope this doesn't fall under the category of asking for medical advice. If so, my apologies.

Long story short, my left armpit has been itchy for more than a week. At first I couldn't see any visible skin irritations, but now (after much scratching) there is a slight red bumpy rash. I did change deodorants recently, but it started itching before that. The other armpit is fine. The only other change I've made recently is shaving more often, so at first I thought it might be an ingrown hair.

Any ideas? Possible remedies? Gold Bond Medicated Powder?
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  #2  
Old 08-21-2008, 01:04 PM
Lobsang Lobsang is offline
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Well, cutting your arm off will stop the itch.
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  #3  
Old 08-21-2008, 01:13 PM
Joey P Joey P is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lobsang
Well, cutting your arm off will stop the itch.
Only if you do it above the shoulder.

RRFM, are you 100% sure it started before you changed deoderant? Any new shirts, or shampoo, or soap, or detergents?

Last edited by Joey P; 08-21-2008 at 01:13 PM..
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  #4  
Old 08-21-2008, 02:55 PM
Daithi Lacha Daithi Lacha is offline
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I've got something similar -- it's prickly heat. Here in sweltering South Florida, it's warm with high humidity, and the constant moisture in my 'pits irritates my oh-so delicate skin.
Try talcum or Gold Bond, and if you want to move on to the hard stuff: hydrocortisone cream 1%.

Also, mind you don't have a fungus. You might want to try a tolnaftate cream.
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  #5  
Old 08-21-2008, 04:02 PM
lobotomyboy63 lobotomyboy63 is offline
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I once had a wicked rash. The doc told me he couldn't really say what caused it, but it usually comes down to one of two things: 1) something you ate, or 2) something your skin came in contact with.

So if you happened to try a new food for the first time, your body could be reacting to it. If you eat out, it could probably even be just one ingredient in a dish.

New detergents, soaps, deodorants, etc. are also prime suspects. In my case, I'm betting it was soap. The ex- used to bring back unused/unopened soaps from business trips and of course they usually had the hotel name on them---but what brand were they? My mom said when I was little, I was really allergic to Dove, so I probably used a bar of that without knowing.

I was miserable btw. Imagine a rash that covers virtually everything, front and back, from your neck to your wrists and ankles. Scratching didn't help matters one bit. If you ever have an experience like this, you'll pick a soap and a laundry detergent and never vary.
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  #6  
Old 08-21-2008, 07:26 PM
DaveRaver DaveRaver is offline
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Have you been using Pert Plus Simply Fresh shampoo on your armpits? (It's the kind that contains menthol). I got a similar rash and I suspect this shampoo since I've been using the same anti-perspirant for decades and I haven't been eating anything unusual.
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  #7  
Old 08-21-2008, 08:37 PM
RachelChristine RachelChristine is offline
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I'm so glad you asked this question because mine has been itching off and on for several months! I'm beginning to suspect my deodorant though, because I got some in my stocking from my mom that isn't what I normally wear. I hadn't used it and then packed it as my to-go on a trip. After that I was switching back and forth between the two since they were both open and recently got to wondering if that was the cause. So far since I've stopped I haven't itched. We'll see if it comes back.
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  #8  
Old 08-21-2008, 09:01 PM
j666 j666 is offline
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Scabies or shingles are possibilities.

You can pick up scabies just from trying on clothes after an infected person, and shingles typically appear on only one side of the body.
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  #9  
Old 08-21-2008, 09:38 PM
bump bump is online now
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My underarms itch like bloody hell if I use a stick anti-perspirant for any significant length of time- it's like the aluminum compounds stop up my sweat glands, and they start itching.

2 days of no deodorant tends to do the trick.
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  #10  
Old 08-21-2008, 11:27 PM
zagloba zagloba is offline
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It might be a fungal infection. I had an itchy right armpit for a couple of weeks and at first thought it was a reaction to deodorant. But it got worse while my left remained asymptomatic. Eventually, the red area became larger but the center of it cleared up, somewhat like ring worm. A few days of daily Tinactin spray treatment cleared it up.
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  #11  
Old 08-21-2008, 11:34 PM
Alice The Goon Alice The Goon is offline
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Fungus isn't usually bumpy- it's usually red and/or scaly. Bumpiness could be an allergic reaction, prickly heat, or a staph or other kind of bacterial infection. Are you using a disposable razor? Do you use a new one every time, or somehow disinfect it between uses? Bacteria grow in them between uses and can cause folliculitis, or infection of the hair follicles. You'd need to see a dermatologist for that.
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  #12  
Old 08-21-2008, 11:45 PM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bump
My underarms itch like bloody hell if I use a stick anti-perspirant for any significant length of time- it's like the aluminum compounds stop up my sweat glands, and they start itching.

2 days of no deodorant tends to do the trick.
I think this is the best solution to start with. Use clear soap, and then wipte down with wintergreen rubbing alcohol after you get out. Use a tad of baby powder.

Try it for a week.
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  #13  
Old 08-21-2008, 11:47 PM
RedRosesForMe RedRosesForMe is offline
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OK, scary answers. Scabies?!?!? I certainly hope not, but from the looks of it it isn't gross enough to be scabies. We'll have to wait and see.

It definitely started before the new deodorant, but just as I ran out of my previous deodorant I discovered an old stick of deodorant that wasn't *quite* used up so I used that for a couple of days before buying a new deodorant. This might have something to do with it, although that particular deodorant hadn't irritated my skin before.

I got some Gold Bond, we'll see how things go I suppose. Seriously hoping it's not a fungal infection.
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  #14  
Old 08-21-2008, 11:57 PM
Alice The Goon Alice The Goon is offline
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It's almost definitely not scabies. Scabies tends to be a whole-body type rash, with concentrations in the wrists, elbows, and fingers. Scabies doesn't look gross, by the way- it just looks like a rash.

Last edited by Alice The Goon; 08-21-2008 at 11:58 PM..
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  #15  
Old 08-22-2008, 09:43 AM
fortytwo fortytwo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bump
My underarms itch like bloody hell if I use a stick anti-perspirant for any significant length of time- it's like the aluminum compounds stop up my sweat glands, and they start itching.
I came to the same conclusion about the aluminium compounds. I use a product called Bionsen it's aluminium free and it works a treat for me.

I don't know if it's available in your part of the world.
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  #16  
Old 08-22-2008, 10:22 AM
Huerta88 Huerta88 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alice The Goon
Fungus isn't usually bumpy- it's usually red and/or scaly.
I (unfortunately) can report that a fungal infection in the armpit area can be red and bumpy as well -- I had the misfortune to get athlete's foot in a g.d. hotel shower (expensive hotel too) and somehow propagate it to armpits and even navel (eww). Tolnaftate might work, but I got better results from steady application of the next-gen "-ine" (as opposed to "-ate" or "-zole") drugs. Look for the "plus" or "pro" or "extra strength" versions of whichever brands (Lamisil (terbenaferine (?)), etc.).
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  #17  
Old 08-22-2008, 03:59 PM
elbows elbows is offline
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Get a new razor, I'd bet your old one is causing this problem.

Just because it's still sharp enough to shave doesn't mean you should still use it. They become infected with bacterias off your skin, especially under your arms, multiplying in the razor while not in use. When you re use it, the bacteria gets into the freshly scraped area you've shaved and causes irritation.

This is my guess, and the first thing I'd try.
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  #18  
Old 08-22-2008, 04:05 PM
chowder chowder is offline
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Crabs?


What?
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