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Please help. Red rash all over face causing extreme social anxiety

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  • Please help. Red rash all over face causing extreme social anxiety

    Hello, I went to a dermatologist a few months back due to eczema on my arms that I've pretty much had my whole life. After being there, she prescribed a heavy steroid cream and gave me a kenalog 40 (steroid shot). My allergist also prescribed a week of prednisone a few weeks later (very dangerous). I also had a bit of contact dermatitis on my face at the time (normal, which always always went away within a few days) and would only come back maybe once or twice a year if I switched laundry detergents or something of that nature. The derm told me it may be seborrheic dermatitis and to use the steroid cream and prescription promiseb (anti fungal).

    After several days of the anti fungal, it made my face MUCH much worse. Irritated, splotchy, red, and it turned a pea sized dry spot of skin on my face (not noticeable) to a huge rash on both side of my cheeks. In a panic, and my ignorance, I started heavily applying the steroid cream on my cheeks 3-4 times a day for about a month.

    Ever since then, I have had this red spot on my cheek that will not go away at all. No moisturizer, cortisone cream, anti histamine, or allergy med will get rid of it. One Benadryl used to always get rid of an irritated spot on my face within an hour that's how I knew it was contact or atopic dermatitis before hand. So my questions are;


    Is this spot in fact seb derm?

    Could it be steroid indices rosacea?

    Could the prednisone shot, oral tabs, steroid cream, or anti fungal cream stripped my skin and made it vulnerable or suppressed my immune system to the point where I actually do have seb derm now?

    I also read online this could sometimes be caused by a mite called demodex which can cause dermatitis.

    Symptoms:
    It itches sometimes but not really all that much. Doesn't appear to be flakey. I use normal soaps and lotions and it seems to make it a tad bit red but not too much. A hot shower will make it a tiny tiny bit more red but not all that much. It is not really all that greasy or shiny/flaky like most patches I've seen of seb derm.

    Please help as it has caused me a lot of anxiety and embarrassment. I also had blood work done and the only thing that came back was low vitamin b12 levels.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    It could be steroid induced rosacea or dermatitis. Whatever it is, it sounds like you pissed your skin off with too many steroids and it needs a break from topicals. Is your skin dry? If you have a compromised skin barrier, you might benefit from moisturization but you might want to wait till the redness calms down. A few forum members really like Neosporin Eczema Essentials (non-steroid formula). If the red area burns or stings and you can't wait for it to calm down on its own, you could try that or you could try making a soothing paste of ground oats with some water and applying it to the affected area. Maybe cover with some mineral makeup if your skin can tolerate it if you are embarrassed about the redness. Obviously do only what your skin can tolerate and approach all new topicals with extreme caution. Sorry you are going through this. I do think it is going to get better with time.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by lwemm View Post
      It could be steroid induced rosacea or dermatitis. Whatever it is, it sounds like you pissed your skin off with too many steroids and it needs a break from topicals. Is your skin dry? If you have a compromised skin barrier, you might benefit from moisturization but you might want to wait till the redness calms down. A few forum members really like Neosporin Eczema Essentials (non-steroid formula). If the red area burns or stings and you can't wait for it to calm down on its own, you could try that or you could try making a soothing paste of ground oats with some water and applying it to the affected area. Maybe cover with some mineral makeup if your skin can tolerate it if you are embarrassed about the redness. Obviously do only what your skin can tolerate and approach all new topicals with extreme caution. Sorry you are going through this. I do think it is going to get better with time.
      Thank you, I really hope you are right as I cannot get into a dermatologist for a few months

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      • #4
        any other thoughts?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Dg0622 View Post
          any other thoughts?

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          • #6
            I'm no expert....but if I was you I'd take a complete break from using anything on your skin and just give it time to rest and heal. See how that goes for a while.

            When skin is angry...it's sometimes best to leave it alone. I was told this....and thought surely I need to be doing something?....but it responded better when I did nothing.

            Topicals, creams etc...only stir it up more.

            Like I said, I'm not a doctor or dermatologist....but that's just my opinion. Other users may disagree...but skin has an amzing capacity to heal by itself. And heal it will.

            I understand the social anxiety....I'm going through a bad flare myself and had to get meds for the anxiety...but I'm still making myself go out coz I still have a life and moping in the house makes my anxiety worse. I wrap up and just go out...park, town, drive out....anything that can help calm your anxiety will help calm your skin...

            You're not alone...x

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            • #7
              Could be an allergic dermatitis. I had that once after using a strong topical for papules and it took about a month to start resolving. Steroids helped but all the inflammation has to dissipate over time. Because I kept intermittently using the irritant because it helped other areas of my skin, the area stayed inflamed for an ungodly amount of time. With you having eczema and contact dermatitis, sounds like your skin is pretty sensitive and could have had an allergic reaction to whatever cream you first started noticing it with. Stop the new creams and go easy on the steroids as it could cause your skin to have a rebound reaction once you discontinue it. Best of luck, bud

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              • #8
                Originally posted by SBD1212 View Post
                Could be an allergic dermatitis. I had that once after using a strong topical for papules and it took about a month to start resolving. Steroids helped but all the inflammation has to dissipate over time. Because I kept intermittently using the irritant because it helped other areas of my skin, the area stayed inflamed for an ungodly amount of time. With you having eczema and contact dermatitis, sounds like your skin is pretty sensitive and could have had an allergic reaction to whatever cream you first started noticing it with. Stop the new creams and go easy on the steroids as it could cause your skin to have a rebound reaction once you discontinue it. Best of luck, bud
                do you think there is any chance it could actually be seb derm based on the pictures? Its been about 3 months since ive used promiseb or a steroid and whie it looks slightly better, it is still there and gets very irriated every time i put moisutrizer on or after the shower

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Dg0622 View Post
                  do you think there is any chance it could actually be seb derm based on the pictures? Its been about 3 months since ive used promiseb or a steroid and whie it looks slightly better, it is still there and gets very irriated every time i put moisutrizer on or after the shower

                  It's hard to say with one picture. Topical steroids used to the amount you used them is bound to cause irritation, which is what it may be. I can't tell from the picture if you have any bumps on your skin, but could be a form of miliaria rubra, which can be caused from over using steroids. The skin can get thin and have a dermatitis from what you did to it. My best advice, if its getting better (even slightly) on its own, I'd just leave it alone and let it heal. I know it's just one picture, but it doesn't even look bad and is hardly noticeable anyway. If it gets irritated with lotion, don't use it. I think it might be healing and every time you worry about it, you put something on your skin that just inflames it and makes it persist longer.

                  I don't know how common steroid induced rosacea or seb derm is, but I doubt that's what it is. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck... its a duck. If you've had these symptoms before (just not as long) its likely just that, only for a longer stretch of time because you severely irritated your skin and probably still continue to.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by SBD1212 View Post
                    It's hard to say with one picture. Topical steroids used to the amount you used them is bound to cause irritation, which is what it may be. I can't tell from the picture if you have any bumps on your skin, but could be a form of miliaria rubra, which can be caused from over using steroids. The skin can get thin and have a dermatitis from what you did to it. My best advice, if its getting better (even slightly) on its own, I'd just leave it alone and let it heal. I know it's just one picture, but it doesn't even look bad and is hardly noticeable anyway. If it gets irritated with lotion, don't use it. I think it might be healing and every time you worry about it, you put something on your skin that just inflames it and makes it persist longer.

                    I don't know how common steroid induced rosacea or seb derm is, but I doubt that's what it is. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck... its a duck. If you've had these symptoms before (just not as long) its likely just that, only for a longer stretch of time because you severely irritated your skin and probably still continue to.
                    thanks for the reply...any other thoughts as i cannot get into a dermatologist for 3 months...I really just want to know if it looks similiar to seb derm or if it was caused by topicals, and if it was topicals will it ever be normal again? Its been around 3-4 months and has not really improved at all.

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                    • #11
                      I use promiseb for my seb derm. I use it as a moisturizer after I get out of the shower as most OTC store bought moisturizers feed the fungus that causes the seb derm. Most of my skin problems all came from topicals as well. If only we had time machines I would maybe try using nothing but just a dab of promiseb for the tightness relief, other than that perhaps less is more in this situation. My experience with promiseb has been fairly positive so keep us posted if it or anything else is the culprit or turns out working for you. Best of luck!

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