July 21, 2016

"On his way to the hospital, Justin posted a photo on Facebook of his hand, which was red, swollen, and dotted with thick, bubbly, yellow, fluid-filled blisters. 'Poison oak?'..."

"... Shortly after, he added a picture of his hand wrapped in a thick glove of gauze and gingerly resting on a white-and-blue antimicrobial pillow.  'Update,' he wrote. 'It’s not poison oak, it’s phytophotodermatitis, or ‘margarita burn’…."

Burned by limes — "the other 'lime disease.'"

13 comments:

CJ said...

From the wiki: Phytophotodermatitis can affect people of any age. Because of the bruise-like appearance that is usually in the shape of handprints or fingerprints, it can be mistaken in children for child abuse.[7]


Turns out, yes, there has been at least one documented case of this: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3976604

We explored the history in two children who had bizarre, hyperpigmented skin lesions suggestive of child abuse. A final diagnosis of phytophotodermatitis was established. The lesions resulted from inadvertent application of squeezed lime juice to the children's skin by their parents during the routine preparation of drinks, followed by sun exposure, which activated the applied plant psoralens (furocoumarins). Phytophotodermatitis can be induced by a number of plants, and, when unrecognized, may lead to inappropriate investigation of child abuse.


rehajm said...

OMG that's funny but tragic it goes undiagnosed and amusing it has its own name (is it next to 'ice cream headache' in the pool party section of the Physician's Desk Reference?)

YoungHegelian said...

Since I am a good Southern boy, I drink lots of iced tea. I also, in the best Southern fashion, squish a wedge of lemon into my tea.

I learned long ago to always, always, always get that lemon juice off your hands as soon as possible. Not only will it burn your fingers, but if your fingers touch your face, or --- if you're a guy & you drain the lizard ---, you get it on your membrum virile, it'll raise welts in the near future.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

You can cook fish in that stuff.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

That reminds me of an incident involving the son of a friend of mine who had no idea he was allergic to shell fish until he got a job at a oyster restaurant shucking oysters.

The skin on his hands still looked rough and scaly months after his one night working there.

coupe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ron Winkleheimer said...

@YoungHealian

Also do a thorough job of washing your hands after cutting up hot peppers.

Ouch!

YoungHegelian said...

@Ron,

Also do a thorough job of washing your hands after cutting up hot peppers.

Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

The culprit was doing the vegetable prep for Szechuan Beef.

David said...

I never knew. One more thing to be careful about. I love lemons and limes but I avoid direct sun like an OCD vampire.

Quaestor said...

You can cook fish in that stuff.

Beat me to it, Eric.

Other plants can cause phytophotodermatitis, among them the Moraceae, a clade of the order Rosales, which includes the figs, which makes one wonder what those authors of the Book of Genesis had in mind when they had Adam and Eve use fig leaves to cover their naughty bits.

Annie said...

I get photodermatitis from sunscreen. It gives me a rash that bubbles up, itches, weeps, and crusts up. Not fun.

alan markus said...

I expected this to be another article about this year's Wild Parsnip invasion going on in Southeastern Wisconsin. Tall plsnts that have yellow blooms that look like Queens Lace(?) - break the stalk and the oil gets on your skin, later on exposure to sun causes blistering. Has been spreading along roadways and along the old railroad lines that have been converted to walking/bike trails.

mikee said...

Nature red in tooth and claw, and in so many, many otherwise innocent-seeming ways as well!