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Re: Cam--allergic rash from Effexor-XR?

Posted by Cam W. on July 29, 2000, at 11:08:02

In reply to Cam--allergic rash from Effexor-XR?, posted by Cindy W on July 28, 2000, at 21:47:12

Cindy - If your rash is due to an allergic reaction you would normally expect it to occur after the second or third dose of the Effexor. How long after the start of the Effexor did the rash start? If it is an allergic reaction, it may not be due to the drug, but to the other components (eg binders, coloring) that also make up the capsule. Did you recently change from the short-acting form of Effexor to the long-acting form?

I know you have, but also consider any changes that you have made just before the rash occurred. Do you have any other allergies? If not, then the likelihood of this being an allergy decreases. Other consideratins can be in the form of a change in soap (clothes or body), shampoos, foods, perfumes (or co-workers' perfumes), rug cleaning, car shampooing, chemical spraying in the yard or neighborhood, etc. Sometimes a seemingly innocuous change can cause an allergic reaction.

Then again, it may not be an allergic reaction to the Effexor, but a rash caused by the Effexor changing the composition of your skin by binding to some other receptor. This is a stab in the dark. Since the Benadryl is not working, one wonders if the rash is truly allergic in nature. Perhaps the Effexor is causing a kind of photosensitivity reaction, where your skin becomes more sensitive to the sun and causes a rash:

[eg. Effexor (in morning) + sun (throughout day - hottest in early afternoon) = reaction that causes the rash]

Effexor is not known to cause photosensitivity reactions (I don't believe), but you can test this hypothesis by using a sunscreen with a SPF number above 15. But, then again, if a rash does occur, it could be a reaction to the sunscreen (just kidding).

I would not be tempted to stop the Effexor until you see, or talk to, your doc. In the meantime, try stirring about 1/4 to 1/2 box of baking soda into a cool to tepid bath and relax in it. This should take away some of the itch. Colloidal oatmeal can also be used (same stuff you use for kids with chicken pox). Calamine lotion can be used as well. Benadryl cream, or other antihistamine creams, are a waste of money, as antihistamines work from the inside out and not very well from the outside in (and they are very expensive for the little that they do).

I hope some of these suggestions help. Keep us informed. - Cam




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