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Forum Name: Dermatology Topics

Question: hard dry skin on one knuckle


 dvsinla - Sat Jun 19, 2010 3:53 pm

i've had this now for a few years...

the skin on my LEFT knuckle (forefinger next to thumb) is hard and dry and cracks (in the same spot) now and then and becomes very painful when that happens... i've used lotions and medicated cream and scraped the hardened skin off for instance when i'm in the jacuzzi WHEN it's really hot... i've cut it away with nail clippers but it keeps coming back...

not sure if it's a fungus but it doesn't look different and hasn't spread... it's an area the size of a quarter and it's just hard skin
 Dr.M.Aroon kamath - Wed Jun 30, 2010 10:46 am

User avatar Hi,
Although it could be a callosity, It seems to be rather an unusual place to get a callosity. It would have been nice if you had told us what your occupation is & your handedness(are you right handed or a left handed person?).

The other possibility is a 'bursa', a fluid(viscid) filled sac. Bursae can be
- congenital (usually seen in most people in known locations within the body). &
- aquired (also known as adventitious bursae).These arise in areas of chronic friction.This is unlikely in your case, as these are situated deep to the skin (and not amenable to cutting with clippers, unless of course, if they are associated with an overlying callosity).

Yet another possibility is an isolated lesion of psoriasis(rare presentations as a single plaque resembling nummular eczema have been reported). Mild keratolytics are the first choice in the management.Topical (intermittent) pulse therapy with clobetasol propionate (0.05%) has been reported to be useful.Coal tar slso may help.

Of the aforesaid possibilities, nummular psoriasis is worth ruling out.


You need to consult a dermatologist rather than resorting to clipping.
Best wishes!
 dvsinla - Sun Jul 04, 2010 1:33 pm

just to answer the questions... i'm a lefty and it's on the left hand. and i'm a writer so i work with the hands but not obviously in that area. thanks for the info
 Dr.M.jagesh kamath - Sun Jul 11, 2010 11:18 am

User avatar Hello,A lichenified dermatitis,localised psoriasis,nummular dermatitis are all the possiblities as rightly pointed out by Dr,Aroon kamath.A fungus infection is unlikely.
Best wishes.

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