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  1. #1
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    Odd injury -- can't sweat. This ever happen to anyone else?

    Hi there. I've stumped my regular doc and a dermatologist, and I'm wondering if anyone in the cycling community has ever had a similar injury.

    In short, I can't sweat anymore.

    The longer version is this:

    Two weekends ago, my wife and I rode our bikes from our home in DC to Annapolis, MD. It's a 30ish mile ride. I didn't drink much, and got very dehydrated. In fact, for about 5 miles, roughly miles 20-25, I stopped sweating and had goosebumps all over my body. We came across a gas station at mile 25, and I downed about 3 liters of gatorade. For the entire ride, I was wearing a backpack with our locks and changes of clothes in it.
    I made it to Annapolis, and we made it home (slower than usual, though -- I was still weak). It took about 24 hours before I peed.

    Since that incident, most of my body can't sweat. From the top of my head to about my chin sweats like normal, but my back, chest, upper arms, legs, and to an extent my forearms (they get a very thin sheen of sweat on them now with exercise).

    I did a quick 20 mile ride from my home in DC to Bethesda, MD along a bike trail. Usually I'd have to peel my sweat-soaked shirt and bike shorts off me. But since the dehydration incident a couple weeks ago, my shirt and shorts stay bone dry. I drink about 2 liters of water or gatorade before, during, and after these type of rides.

    Instead of sweating, I feel pinpricks under my skin, which I understand is the sweat trying to get out of my body, but can't due to plugged sweat glands. They present a red rash and zit-like things for a few hours after exercise.

    We're pretty sure I have something called "Prickly Heat Rash" or "Anhidrotic Heat Exhaustion." My docs can't figure out why my head sweats like normal, and why the rest of my body doesn't. What's even weirder is that we rode 101 miles this weekend, and I stayed hydrated, but I didn't sweat, nor did my core body temp go up like you'd think it would when you can't sweat to cool off.

    All my bloodwork, electrolytes, etc are 100% normal. Anyone ever have this happen to them, or have an idea what the heck's happening to me?

    Thanks,

    Erik

  2. #2
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    Call a specialist at a good Univ Research/Medical center. Try the University of Maryland, for example. Some rare situations like this are not encountered by most docs or specialists. These universities can even reach out to other specialists around the country.

    I'd start making some calls soon. You could overheat, have a heatstroke, and do permanent damage to your brain. Keep us posted and I hope everything gets back to normal.

  3. #3
    The Pirate
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    I'm not a medical professional in any way shape or form, I'm just talking out of my arse here. So first off, take Flyer's advice and see a specialist as soon as you can.

    If you're keeping an eye on your body temp and it is staying normal, then I wouldn't think your body would be at risk of heat exaustion, dehydration or brain damage. Our bodies are only supposed to sweat to manage our core temperature. It sounds like maybe your sweating head might be enough to keep your temp down for now? I wouldn't do any long distance or strenuous riding until you get this figured out, just in case.

    I hope you find out what it is soon and get it taken care of. Be sure to let us know all about it

  4. #4
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    Are you fully hydrated now? As in, are you drinking at least 64oz a day when not exercising; preferably a gallon? If you're not drinking like that, you're probably still dehydrated. And I would make sure you're getting sufficient electrolytes.
    Oh sh!+ just force upgraded to cat1. Now what?
    Best thing about an ultra marathon? I just get to ride my bike for X hours!

  5. #5
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    Is it possible that because of the trauma your body recieved form your recent dehydration, your body is remembering and trying to retain any water because of it? Just sit on your but and get lazy for a week and see if next week you sweat again. Me = not a doctor, or have any clue

  6. #6
    Nat
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    So you are not sweating on any skin that is covered by clothing, but you are on exposed areas? I wonder if the clothing is playing a part in blocking sweat ducts?

    Does it sound like miliaria to you?
    http://www.dermnet.org.nz/hair-nails.../miliaria.html
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_rash
    http://www.emedicine.com/derm/topic266.htm

    Does your skin look like this?
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Nat; 08-28-2006 at 07:38 PM.

  7. #7
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    Me again, the guy who started this thread. I spent some time yesterday searching for possible causes. I think I found it.
    I was on a medicine called Topamax, which treats migraines. I think the medicine induced the miliaria, which the dermatologist was able to diagnose.
    What we can't find out now is how long this side effect will last. I discontinued the Topamax.

    Topamax has the following warning:

    Oligohidrosis (decreased sweating), infrequently resulting in hospitalization, has been reported in association with TOPAMAX®use. Decreased sweating and an elevation in body temperature above normal characterized these cases. Some of the cases were reported after exposure to elevated environmental temperatures.

    The majority of the reports have been in children. Patients, especially pediatric patients, treated with TOPAMAX® should bemonitored closely for evidence of decreased sweating and increased body temperature, especially in hot weather. Caution should be used when TOPAMAX® is prescribed with other drugs that predispose patients to heat-related disorders; these drugs include, but are not limited to, other carbonic anhydrase inhibitors and drugs with anticholinergic activity.

  8. #8
    Nat
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecox
    Me again, the guy who started this thread. I spent some time yesterday searching for possible causes. I think I found it.
    I was on a medicine called Topamax, which treats migraines. I think the medicine induced the miliaria, which the dermatologist was able to diagnose.
    What we can't find out now is how long this side effect will last. I discontinued the Topamax.

    Topamax has the following warning:

    Oligohidrosis (decreased sweating), infrequently resulting in hospitalization, has been reported in association with TOPAMAX®use. Decreased sweating and an elevation in body temperature above normal characterized these cases. Some of the cases were reported after exposure to elevated environmental temperatures.

    The majority of the reports have been in children. Patients, especially pediatric patients, treated with TOPAMAX® should bemonitored closely for evidence of decreased sweating and increased body temperature, especially in hot weather. Caution should be used when TOPAMAX® is prescribed with other drugs that predispose patients to heat-related disorders; these drugs include, but are not limited to, other carbonic anhydrase inhibitors and drugs with anticholinergic activity.
    Good detective work! Half-life is 21 hours, so maybe it won't be too long before you're back to normal. Hopefully.

    Edit: I just saw that you d/c'd the medication. How long ago?
    Last edited by Nat; 08-29-2006 at 08:11 AM.

  9. #9
    EGGROLL!!!
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    I need to try this Topamax stuff...I hate sweating!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by eggraid101
    I need to try this Topamax stuff...I hate sweating!
    Another side effect is that it's an appetite suppressant. My wife wants to use my leftover...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nat
    Good detective work! Half-life is 21 hours, so maybe it won't be too long before you're back to normal. Hopefully.

    Edit: I just saw that you d/c'd the medication. How long ago?
    I was on 100mg/day. d/c'd it going 100-75-50-25-0mg over a 4 day period. Been off it for about 10 days.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecox
    I was on 100mg/day. d/c'd it going 100-75-50-25-0mg over a 4 day period. Been off it for about 10 days.
    So you didn't read the label before you started taking it? Hmm

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ecox
    Another side effect is that it's an appetite suppressant. My wife wants to use my leftover...

    hey, send some o' that stuff my way. i'm fat and sweaty.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by endurowanker
    i'm fat and sweaty.
    The first step is always acceptance....

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by TurboasT4
    The first step is always acceptance....


    maybe i could lose some weight if i wasn't always waiting for your ass to catch up.

  16. #16
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    I was on topomax and I sweat like a redneck trying to read.

    Did it induce actual malaria or similar symptoms?
    unityhandbuilt

  17. #17
    Nat
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    Quote Originally Posted by tozovr
    I was on topomax and I sweat like a redneck trying to read.

    Did it induce actual malaria or similar symptoms?
    Miliaria, not malaria!

  18. #18
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    wow.

    this is/was a fascinating post. Thans for sharing. I would have totally freaked out.

    I reckon its wierd that some people sweat more than others. I sweat like a motherf@cker

  19. #19
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    Love all these wondeful new medications that have a " few mild side effects" Let's see get rid of the migranes but loose the ability to sweat. I always love listening to the commercials for most drugs these days "will help stop ***** but may include some side effects like headache, nasiau (sp?), cramping, bloating, itching, rashes, constipation etc etc". Glad I don't need to be taking any of that stuff and only on the very rare occasion take a panadol.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
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  20. #20
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    double
    Last edited by jlang002; 09-19-2006 at 09:23 AM.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by MRfire
    So you didn't read the label before you started taking it? Hmm
    Rare side effects are not on the data sheet. Guess you didn't read it either.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlang002
    Rare side effects are not on the data sheet. Guess you didn't read it either.
    Guess I wasn't taking it either.......and if I was - I certainly would have done some thorough research

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by MRfire
    Guess I wasn't taking it either.......and if I was - I certainly would have done some thorough research
    So I guess he shouldn't have taken a med to alleviate migraines because miliaria was a rare side effect in pediatric patients? Dude, get real. Virtually every prescribed med has side effects.

  24. #24
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    I had some friends on Topamax....We call it Dumb-amax, for some reason in some people it makes them fumble for words....

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlang002
    So I guess he shouldn't have taken a med to alleviate migraines because miliaria was a rare side effect in pediatric patients? Dude, get real. Virtually every prescribed med has side effects.
    I would just go to my witch doctor in India.......

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