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Stuck in a Flushed Itchy State Since Saturday. Could the Beta Blocker Be Causing This?


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Saturday afternoon I started flushing (which isn't unusual as I have had this issue for years) but the flushing has not subsided. Whether it is related to my autoimmune diseases or something else remains to be seen. Usually the flushing is on and off and does not itch but is red and hot. It's in the butterfly shape of lupus usually. This is different. It's hot, itchy, red and changes locations on my face and neck throughout the day. Eating any food makes it worse and I am itchy all over my body. Benedryl has not helped.

My ANS doctor thinks that I may have mast cell issues, yet he put me on nadolol which is a beta blocker, to try and get my bp and heart rate under control. It has helped with the BP and heart rate but now I'm concerned that this flushing that isn't going away is my body telling me that my mast cells are out of control. 

The problem is that my ANS doctor keeps ASKING me what I'd like to do? I want him to TELL me what to do! I am not a doctor, I shouldn't be the one to decide if I should start or stop medications! 

In the meantime they are trying to get an MIBG scan approved by my insurance and that isn't going well either. My norepinephrine and dopamine are high. I'm very frustrated at this point. I've never had this particular flush before. The itching is keeping me up at night. I honestly don't know what to do. Any suggestions would be great. Thank you!




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How long have you been on the beta blocker? Have you asked your doctor about possibly skipping a dose for a day (if they advise this as an option), or maybe taking a half dose one day just to see if it has any affect on the flushing and itching?

Since they believe mast cell might be a problem have they advised you to do anything to treat symptoms for this?

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This definitely sounds like a reaction (most likely allergic or autoimmune).  Do you have an allergist? The warm weather has increase not only the amount of pollens present but has allowed molds to flourish.  Sometimes Benadryl will not completely stop a reaction if it has gotten to a certain point.  Consult with your primary as well and see what he recommends. If you are having problems with asthma as well, I would see a doctor as soon as possible.  Does the beta blocker seem to aggravate this? Either way this should be addressed.

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I agree with statesof that it's worth asking the doc if you should stop the BB for a day or two to see how that affects the flushing. 

And, as Amalie stated, benedryl may not be enough if this is a full blown mast cell reaction.  I take 2 H1 antihistamines and an H2 daily, but I still have to supplement with benedryl and promethazine for breakthrough rashes and GI issues. Even with all of that, sometines, it isn't enough and I have to ride it out. Also, it is possible that IV antihistamines could ultimately be needed. 

I think I'd call the doc and ask about skipping the BB for a day or two and also for help choosing a combo of antihistamines to try to treat. Obviously,  if you're going to skip the BB, you may want to do that before trying additional antihistamines so you know what's working and what's not.

Hope this goes away soon. I hate itching!! :wacko:

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Something important that I forgot to mention. I was diagnosed with the flu a little less than 2 weeks ago. Was on Tamiflu. My rheumy says it's very common to have an autoimmune flare after having the flu and wants to start me back on prednisone, which I just got off of. Ugh. My ANS doctor is not responding to my questions regarding mast cell and beta blockers.

I have been on the nadolol for 8 weeks. I started on 20 mgs for the first 6 and 2 weeks ago we upped it to 30 mgs.

I will ask the doc about skipping the BB for a day or two and see what happens.

I don't have allergies or asthma. 

Yes, the itching is HORRIBLE!!



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