If you get a regular case of poison ivy, you should try over the counter and home remedies first. Wash the clothing you were wearing when you came in contact with the plant and de-grease your skin with a de-greasing soap that you can suds up and remove the oil-based toxin that causes the rash. You can try over the counter Benadryl ointment, hydrocortisone ointment or cream, there and calamine lotion to block the itching and control the spread of the disease. This should take care of most cases of poison ivy and you won't need to see the doctor.

If you are someone who gets serious poison ivy or get a case of poison ivy that covers most of the body and that doesn't get any better with over the counter remedies, then consider seeing the doctor. The doctor will examine you for the telltale signs of poison ivy, which is an irregular red, raised rash that has linear streaks in it from scratching the area. The doctor will probably not do any tests but will go on sight alone to decide if yours is a case of poison at this site ivy.

If the doctor believes you have the rash, there are several things he or she can prescribe or recommend for. For example, he or she may recommend or prescribe diphenhydramine tablets or capsules. These will block histamine and reduce the itching. They can make you tired so the doctor can also recommend Claritin tablets or Zyrtec capsules which are nonsedating source antihistamines.

The doctor can also prescribe a strong cortisone cream, such as Diprolene cream or ointment. These are powerful steroids that act locally to block the effects of having the rash. You put the ointment or cream on once or twice per day. They work best when a small body area is affected and not so well when you have a here total body rash.

For a total body rash, the doctor can recommend a couple of things. The doctor can recommend a prednisone taper, which is a higher dose of prednisone, in the range of 60 milligrams initially taken for three days and then 40 milligrams a day taken for three days, and then 20 milligrams per day taken for three days and finally, 10 milligrams per day taken for three days. This is a long course of treatment but it has been found that a shorter course of treatment often results in a return of the poison ivy as soon as you stop the taper. Tapers in the range of two weeks seem to work the at this site best.

Another option is giving you a Kenalog shot. This is a cortisone shot that is relatively long-lasting and can only be given once every three months. It acts systemically in the body to get rid of the poison ivy itching and rash fairly quickly. One shot is all it takes to get rid of the poison ivy.

The goal of doctor's treatments is to block the immune system so that it doesn't overreact to the toxin causing poison ivy. Corticosteroids are the mainstay of doctor's remedies for this condition.

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