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Poison oak vs poison ivy which is worse

A 27-year-old female asked:
Dr. Glynis Ablon
Dermatology 29 years experience
Typically if it is: all over, you may need oral steroids. The way the resin from the plant spreads is actually through your nails, so cut them short and scrub them. Try s... Read More
Dr. Warren Wolfe
Family Medicine 58 years experience
What medicine?: It is important to know what medicine was prescribed. It sounds like you may have been given a topical steroid and a antihistamine that is not contro... Read More
Dr. Robert Killian
General Practice 28 years experience
More Serious: You have more than just a simple reaction to something. Please go to the ER or urgent care today. Or at least page your doctor on call for instruction... Read More

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A 32-year-old member asked:
Dr. Joseph Eastern
Dermatology 44 years experience
Sort of.: An ointment of equal parts poison ivy vine, prickly ash bark, and alfalfa seeds is supposed to be good for arthritis. I donít know if it works, and i ... Read More
A 40-year-old member asked:
Dr. Bhavin Patel
Allergy and Immunology 25 years experience
Different plants: Same clinical presentation of contact dermatitis. Treatment is the same. However, these are two different plants.
Dr. Martin Ostro
Allergy and Immunology 49 years experience
Yes: Poison ivy (in eastern us), oak (in western us), sumac (in eastern us) are 3 species in the genus toxicodendron or rhus which all produce urushiol oil... Read More
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Different /same pbm: Poison Ivy has a compound leaf with 3 sharpened arrowhead like blades. Poison oak has a similar compound leaf with 3 blades that have rounded edges, l... Read More
A 37-year-old member asked:
Dr. Gary Steven
Pediatric Allergy and Asthma 30 years experience
Steroids: These reactions represent a contact allergy, and can be quite severe. The affected area needs to be washed thoroughly, and topical steroid creams can ... Read More
A 44-year-old member asked:
Dr. Paul Carter
A Verified Doctoranswered
A US doctor answeredLearn more
Yes: Both are due to contact allergy to oils/ sap from the plants. The rashes are identical.
A 23-year-old member asked:
Dr. Wm. Marcus Spurlock
Preventive Medicine 40 years experience
Plants: The shape of the leaf is the only difference. Poison ivy is a smooth border. Poison oak is rugged and shaped like an oak leaf. Both plants have bra... Read More
A 33-year-old member asked:
Dr. Andrew Murphy
Allergy and Immunology 29 years experience
Not much: Poison ivy and poison oak are both plants that can cause a contact dermatitis. The rash will look the same from both of these plants.
A 34-year-old member asked:
Dr. Wm. Marcus Spurlock
Preventive Medicine 40 years experience
Plant allergy: Poison ivy has leaves of 3 and smooth edges. Poison oak has leaves of 3 and has rough edges like an oak leaf. They both cause blister like rashes to... Read More
A 33-year-old member asked:
Dr. James Fox
Allergy and Immunology 44 years experience
Yes: Clothing is not an effective barrier, especially if one sweats. Wearing vinyl gloves under garden gloves can help.
A 35-year-old member asked:
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
The plant involved: These are two different plants ; both produce the rheus antigen responsible for the identical contact dermatitis. The leaves of the plant are similar... Read More

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