Patient Comments: Sun-Sensitive Drugs - Phototoxic Drugs

If you had a sun-sensitive reaction to a drug, what was the medication? What were your symptoms?

Comment from: jennie, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

I have been taking omeprazole 20 mg and prednisolone 5 mg for 9 weeks, then began hydroxychloroquine 200 mg for 3 weeks, and then reduced prednisolone to 4 mg. I also took vitamin D. One week later I stood in the bathroom with winter sunlight lighting my face and neck, then burning and redness began where the sun touched, this continued the rest of the day and worsened. Next day (Saturday) I showed it to a local pharmacist and told her it had spread all over my trunk including my genitals and burning worse. She said it wouldn't be the medication as I had been taking them a while (a reaction would be more instant), I didn't need to see a doctor and sold me some antihistamine tablets. Second (Sunday) day everything was more intense and also down my limbs, I saw another pharmacist and she thought it was probably the medication in particular hydroxychloroquine, and that I should see a doctor next day. Monday face, nose and lips swollen, I saw the doctor who said to stop the hydroxychloroquine totally and increase the prednisolone to 20 mg for 5 days then return to 4 mg per day, and if I had more swelling (tongue, etc.) then to seek immediate further help from the doctor or hospital. It is Saturday again, I am improving slowly, swelling, burning, and redness are lessening but still on face, rest of rash fading and now very itchy.

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Comment from: Girlzoom, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 18

I am taking metoprolol and Norvasc. I am having extreme sun sensitivity. I just recently changed to Norvasc from Cozaar.

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Comment from: Mouse, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

I began taking hydrochlorothiazide a little over a month ago. It was soon after that our son came to visit and we went to the Oregon coast. We walked quite a bit there. It was about 80 degrees. I wore a hat. But when we got back to the motel I noticed my face, hands, neck, and eyes were bright red, and burned and itched. My husband and son did not have it. Nothing helped. I continued to have it for the next month. Though it has got a little better it is still red, inflamed and itchy. I then went out a couple of days ago for 15 minutes and within that time I again totally turned red, was itching, and my eyes swelled up. It was in reading this article that I realized that I am highly allergic to the medicine. I do have some other medical allergies, but this is about the worst. I am going to the doctor tomorrow and am asking to be taken off of this medication. I am only taking the 12.5mg. I believe it is not needed. And I can't go on looking like someone has beat me in the face. Thanks for your article, I believe it has really answered my problem.

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Comment from: lgittins1, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 19

I have taken hydrochlorothiazide for several years. This past year I have had sunburn on my feet and one leg. They look a reddish purple color and swell a lot. They also hurt really badly. They have the appearance of being baked.

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Comment from: valj, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: July 21

Having lived in Hawaii and California, and never any issue with sun exposure, I was very annoyed to find out that I was having allergic type reaction to sun. The only medication that I was taking was Nexium. Symptoms were severe itching on arms and legs that would last for 1 to 2 weeks following sun exposure. One incident that was severe happened while on vacation in Hawaii. No sunburn, but with multiple days at the beach itch became severe and I also got hives on arms, neck and face. Doctor visit with steroid injection and several day course of steroids took care of this and I switched to an OTC acid reducer.

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Patient Comments

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Sun-Sensitive Drugs - Symptoms Question: Describe your reaction or symptoms to a sun-sensitive medication. When did symptoms appear?
Sun-Sensitive Drugs - Treatment Question: What types of treatment, including other medications, did you receive after experiencing a sun-sensitive drug reaction?
Sun-Sensitive Drugs - Foods and Plants Question: Do certain vegetables, fruits, or plants cause you to have a photosensitivity reaction? Please share your experience.

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