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Allergy to comfrey?

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  • Allergy to comfrey?

    Started using my fermented yukky comfrey last week. Phew what a pong!
    I used a scoop to scoop it into my watering can before diluting it and using.
    Anyway, my right hand has blistered and become infected under the nails. Very swollen and painful.
    Anyone else had this reaction?
    And do you think it’s an allergy to comfrey or just an infection from the stinking, fermenting, nasty brew?

  • #2
    Yikes -that sounds dreadful!
    I've no idea about allergies to it but I'd certainly use rubber gloves with it in future-just in case.
    The things we do for our plants eh?????
    "Nicos, Queen of Gooooogle" and... GYO's own Miss Marple

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    • #3
      Forgot to say- hope it settles quickly .
      "Nicos, Queen of Gooooogle" and... GYO's own Miss Marple

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      • #4
        How quickly did it come on? If it were an allergy, onset should have been less than 1 hour. Bacterial infection would take longer.
        Personally, I would err on the side of infection. The fermented comfrey liquid is crawling with bacteria, after all, so if you had a small cut or something and it got in there...

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        • #5
          Have you got any antiseptic cream I hope you’re alright,some plants can give you a reaction. My nephew phoned the doctors recently & was prescribed antibiotics over the phone,you don’t have to go in the surgery,phone them they’d have experience of it.

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          • #6
            Definitely call the doctor's/111 and go through triage. A week is a long time to be seeing anything related to the comfrey.
            Last edited by marchogaeth; 14-05-2020, 03:48 PM.
            "A life lived in fear is a life half lived."

            PS. I just don't have enough time to say hello to everyone as they join so please take this as a delighted to see you here!

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            • #7
              No idea but hope you’re feeling better soon - getting some advice from 111 might be good as suggested x
              All at once I hear your voice
              And time just slips away
              Bonnie Raitt

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              • #8
                Thanks all for your replies.
                have been having trouble getting on the site so gave up for a few days and then came back to see your comments.
                its heart warming to see so much concern and advice from you all. Thank you!
                Hands and nails still pretty manky - OH doesn’t want me making bread coz he won’t fancy it!! (There’s sympathy for you!).
                he even nipped off to Lidl for a sliced loaf!
                I’m pretty sure it is an infection rather than an allergy - have been plastering on Savlon, but it’s not helping. I reckon I’m going to lose three nails!
                why haven’t I phoned for advice - goodness knows.
                Probably because I think they’ve got more important things to worry about.
                Anyway, I’ll phone tomorrow and see if I can get something with a bit more oomph than Savlon.
                cheers all

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                • #9
                  BY ek,that sounds nasty,you could also ask a phamacey to have a look,sounds like you need antibiotics,hope you get it sorted soonest,take care off yourself.
                  sigpicAnother nutter ,wife,mother, nan and nanan,love my growing places,seed collection and sharing,also one of these

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                  • #10
                    Losing 3 nails????? Yikes!
                    yeh...deffo go and ask for some medical support -I hadn't realised it was that bad!
                    "Nicos, Queen of Gooooogle" and... GYO's own Miss Marple

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                    • #11
                      Well I took your advice and phoned 111.
                      They are sending the details to my pharmacy and I have to phone in the morning.
                      in the meantime, gotta bathe the fingers in warm water seven (magic number???) times a day and keep them clean.
                      no gardening for me today then.

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                      • #12
                        GOOD,glad you have sought help,not nice.
                        sigpicAnother nutter ,wife,mother, nan and nanan,love my growing places,seed collection and sharing,also one of these

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                        • #13
                          Update on the manky hands .....
                          NHS111 referred me on to my GP, so I had a telephone appointment with him. Was asked to send photos and almost immediately got a call back saying that he would send a prescription for antibiotics and some topical ointment to my nearest Pharmacy.
                          Fantastic service.
                          Wish I had gone down this route much sooner.
                          Thank you all!

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                          • #14
                            I'm hoping your hands are now ok and back in full working order?

                            I have to say that hearing about your hands has actually made me a bit more cautious in the garden!
                            "Nicos, Queen of Gooooogle" and... GYO's own Miss Marple

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nicos View Post
                              I'm hoping your hands are now ok and back in full working order?

                              I have to say that hearing about your hands has actually made me a bit more cautious in the garden!
                              We probably forget that anything which is rotting or fermenting is, by definition, full of bacteria, and if we have a cut or other open wound, they could get in and cause an infection.

                              My Dad used to be a teacher for problem children, and they kept chickens because it was good therapy for them. One of the kids had cuts on his knuckles and he mucked out the chickens without wearing gloves. His hand got infected, which turned to gangrene, and eventually had to be amputated.
                              Obviously that's an extreme example, and it's about animal faeces, not rotting leaves, but it gives you an idea of how serious infected cuts can potentially become.

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