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Skin Care and Diseases

Goose-bump-like patches on skin

08/07/2000

Question:

I get goose bump like patches on my skin that last up to a minute then disappear. They can occur from 0-20 times a day. A recent blood test shows an elevated ANA count. My Dr. diagnosed CREST scleroderma, however I do not have any symptoms for CREST. Any input would be appreciated. Is their a test to confirm CREST scleroderma?

Answer:

CREST syndrome is a complex of findings that easily define it. The person has Raynaud`s phenomenon, meaning that when his hands get cold they blanch white, then get red and finally blue. A person need not have all these findings.

In addition there are telangiectases on the skin, calcium deposits in the skin and the fingers become tapered.Often the person has heart burn. Not all of these symptoms are necessary to make the diagnosis of CREST. There are tests like antibodies to centromeres that are very specific for CREST but are positive only in about 25% of individuals (low sensitivity) with CREST.

I cannot relate your goose pimples with CREST. Goose pimples usually are related to the erector pilae musles attached to hair follicles contracting. The person gets goose pimples such as when they are cold. I am not certain how to relate them to the diagnosis of CREST. Possibly I am not thinking about the correct diagnosis. Please contact your doctor and ask him to clarify both your CREST and goose pimples for you.

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Response by:

James J Nordlund, MD
Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati