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Thread: My face :( Still waiting for derm referral.

  1. #1
    Senior Member LadyBee's Avatar
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    Default My face :( Still waiting for derm referral.

    I am waiting for a letter from the hospital. Finally getting a referral to see a dermatologist. Wish I had got one earlier because right now I am so fed up, this is really getting me down lately. It's been 2 years now since it started. I'm 25 years old. I think it's worse now than it was in the beginning... in that the flushes seem to be deeper. But maybe it's just that I am stressed about it so it seems worse. I don't know. Hard to tell because I HATE taking photos of myself when it happens, so I barely have any.

    I still have no idea what is wrong with me. My GP tentatively suggested rosacea but was not sure at all, he admitted. He put me on oxytetracycline for a month which had absolutely no effect whatsoever.

    I figured while I am waiting for my referral to come through I would ask you guys what you think... I would love to know if anybody's flushes behave like mine (and if so what helped you to control it!).


    It's really only my cheeks that turn red. My nose isn't really affected at all, nor is my forehead or chin. (My nose is sometimes red at other times, but just never in my "flushing episodes")


    See? That's a mild one but that's the general pattern. Usually extends a little lower on the cheeks so that there is an obvious white area around the mouth and chin (and around my eyes also).

    It extends to my temples. Around the outside of my cheek I have permanent little red dots which never seem to turn into spots, they just itch... They go away a bit if I manage not to flush for long enough (but usually that fails, sadly, so they are here to stay)



    As for my flushing -
    It occurs pretty much every day. It is usually right after I start eating. It takes 5-10 minutes to reach full redness, and then takes 1-2 hours to fade, depending on the severity. That's always the same. I don't flush at random times, it's only in conjuction with eating. I blush sometimes, when I'm embarrassed or it's cold outside, but that's very different and fades within a few minutes. The flushing I get when I eat is very specific and lasts at least an hour without fail, leaving itchy irritation on my face in the aftermath.

    Here is a comparison between face on a very good day (my complexion is usually far more blotchy than that!) and flushed face:


    And this is what my cheek typically looks like close-up when I'm flushing (sometimes less bumpy, it depends):


    see how weird my pores look? GRRRRR.



    Anyway. That is my face. Grump grump grump.

  2. #2
    Senior Member LadyBee's Avatar
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    Just wanted to add - when I flush, I do not experience burning or stinging. Usually when I flush I experience a kind of weird sinus pressure, or a very mild aching sensation behind my cheeks. Sometimes nothing at all though.

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    Default I normally

    I normally would not say this but I think it is your diet. Not simply because it happens when or after you eat...but because the up close photo looks more like some kind of hives going on. Your skin and complexion look good though.

    I think this is a case of stress and possibly some kind of food reaction. When I flush during eating, which I never use to notice before this site, I often find that I am going into shark mode... which is to say I am heavily indulging in the act of scarfing.

    Possibly, somehow this sends out a chemical reaction.

    I would be willing to bet you have experienced hives before in your life? Am I right?

    No doctor here and just shooting from the hip. Your skin and hair color is similar to mine. Are your eyes different colors?

    What kind of blood do you have? German, Irish....etc

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    Hi -LadyBee,

    Thank you for sharing your pictures. And welcome to the Rosacea Forum.

    Your skin looks very lovely - honest. I do see the flushing or pinkness in a few photos, but you have pretty skin nonetheless.

    I have mainly vascular Rosacea too, but also a mild case of the papular type. Like you, when I do flush, a itching/burning sensation comes on as well. I find antihistamines, diet, probiotics, and supplements help. I also take Oracea (40mg timed-released Doxycline). This helps with my mild papules/acne. It also helps lessen inflammation. I also use mild topicals to keep my skin in check. I also take digestive enzymes and used to take HCL (hydrochloric acid) as I believed my stomach was producing too little acid to digest my food. Many of us have digestion issues - acid indigestion/reflux, constipation, diarrhea, etc. Some have noticed, like myself, when digestion is improved, often Rosacea flares are lessened. I feel the digestive enzymes have helped me a lot. I don't take anti-flushing medication, but this could be helpful. Some here have tried it with success.

    I think it's fairly normal to flush a bit when eating, bending down, exercising, etc. But like You could be allergic or have food sensitivities that are causing extra redness/burning/itching. Do you notice it with certain foods or drinks? Does your skin itch after applying any skin care? If so, eliminating or lessening intake of food (or skin care) may help a lot. You may wish to keep a log or diary - then you can what you eat and skin care you use daily. How your face looks and reacts. I keep a diary which has helped me identify things that irritate my face or digestion. Things like: dairy, too much sugar, wheat products, citrus, and certain skin care cause my Rosacea to flare.

    I'm not a Dr. - just providing some input and some information. Lots of information here to read and ponder. While waiting for your referral, it's you are browsing information which will be helpful when you see your Dr. Also, if you choose to start a little "skin/food diary" you may notice food sensitivities or things that may be causing some of your flares, which would also be helpful to share with your Dr.

    Take care and chat again soon.

    Regards,

    Yvette

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    Senior Member LadyBee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by solutionquest View Post
    I normally would not say this but I think it is your diet. Not simply because it happens when or after you eat...but because the up close photo looks more like some kind of hives going on. Your skin and complexion look good though.

    I think this is a case of stress and possibly some kind of food reaction. When I flush during eating, which I never use to notice before this site, I often find that I am going into shark mode... which is to say I am heavily indulging in the act of scarfing.

    Possibly, somehow this sends out a chemical reaction.

    I would be willing to bet you have experienced hives before in your life? Am I right?

    No doctor here and just shooting from the hip. Your skin and hair color is similar to mine. Are your eyes different colors?

    What kind of blood do you have? German, Irish....etc
    Hi solutionquest, thank you for your thoughts

    I don't think I've ever had hives before! Do they look like hives? I don't really know what hive are supposed to look like, I thought they were usually bigger! But I have no idea. I don't know what papules are supposed to look like up close either, so not sure what my little bumpy red itchies would be identified as. I guess I'll see what the dermatologist says.

    I have thought the same thing, about diet.
    I have noticed that I do seem to flush worse when I've been at work and therefore not eaten for 5-6 hours. But that may coincidental, because I had this flushing going on even when I was unemployed and snacking at more regular intervals.

    I tend to get sinus pressure/aching at the same time at flushing or just afterwards. I wondered if the two might be related because the issues started around the same sort of time. I've been experimenting with my diet since early January. Currently I'm on an elimination diet... as of last Saturday, I've been eating no dairy, no gluten, no processed foods, no citrus, no preservatives, no sugars, no nuts, low histamine, low salicylate (yes all these things at once! It's pretty tough, but I somehow seem to find enough stuff I can eat...) - no anything that people commonly have reactions or sensitivities to. And yet somehow this week my skin has been worse than ever, I feel groggy and fatigued and my sinuses have been in agony since I flushed yesterday evening, and my left ear is ringing something awful. I don't know what's going on here! This is fairly typical though, I am not sick, this is just a set of symptoms I regularly experience. I told my GP all this and he wasn't remotely interested, so I'm hoping that the derm will be more helpful.


    And yes my eyes are different colours, since I was a baby. I have mostly German blood with a little Scottish in there somewhere.



    Yvette, thank you very much for your thoughts as well! I have thought about trying the hydrochloric acid, as I am positive it is something to do with my digestion. I have kept a food diary for the last month. I thought it must be food sensitivities. Unfortunately I have not been able to identify any patterns at all, only that since I've been off gluten and dairy for 5 days it seems to be WORSE which makes little sense to me. It seems to be eating that triggers it no matter what I eat. I don't think I would care much if it only lasted 5 minutes, and didn't leave me all itchy-bumpy afterwards. But 2 hours is a bit much! And the itching drives me crazy.

    Just to clarify, I don't experience any burning, stinging or itching at the time of the flush.
    It's only itchy afterwards, when the bumps start to come up on my skin a couple of hours later.

    I'm continuing with the food diary anyway so I can present it to the dermatologist as evidence that it's apparently not a specific type of food that does this, and hoping that this especially bad spell will end soon.
    Last edited by LadyBee; 3rd February 2010 at 10:02 AM.

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    Senior Member LadyBee's Avatar
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    Sorry to keep double-posting, I can't find an "edit" feature!

    Wanted to add that I have tried a daily antihistamine too. This doesn't seem to have an effect.

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    Your Skin looks EXACTLY like mine, I just get a bit redder, but wow...almost the same

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    Hi LadyBee,

    It does sound like a food/digestive sensitivity to me as your itchiness and bumps occur shortly afterward. Hmm. It's interesting you've cut dairy/gluten and you've not seen any change, though it could be something or a few things causing it. These things can be puzzling; I do hope you find what's causing the flares.

    Other things that may aggravate flares... Are you going in/outside where it's cold and then hot (heater)? When I go outside in this colder weather, my cheeks seemed to get irritated by the cold. Another possibility, do you think you've developed sensitivity to your skin care, water, etc. I think the diary you are keeping will be helpful in the long run, it's really helped me.

    Hang in there and talk to you soon.

    Yvette

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    Senior Member LadyBee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Book1985 View Post
    Your Skin looks EXACTLY like mine, I just get a bit redder, but wow...almost the same
    Ooh really? Interesting. Have you had an official diagnosis with rosacea or something else?


    Quote Originally Posted by Yvette
    Hi LadyBee,

    It does sound like a food/digestive sensitivity to me as your itchiness and bumps occur shortly afterward. Hmm. It's interesting you've cut dairy/gluten and you've not seen any change, though it could be something or a few things causing it. These things can be puzzling; I do hope you find what's causing the flares.

    Other things that may aggravate flares... Are you going in/outside where it's cold and then hot (heater)? When I go outside in this colder weather, my cheeks seemed to get irritated by the cold. Another possibility, do you think you've developed sensitivity to your skin care, water, etc. I think the diary you are keeping will be helpful in the long run, it's really helped me.

    Hang in there and talk to you soon.

    Yvette
    Yeah I'm putting my money on food or digestion. It is indeed odd - the flushing literally seems to hold off until I put some food in my mouth, and then it comes rushing on in the space of 5 minutes! The weird thing is I never had any allergies or sensitivities to anything until a couple of years ago. It's like whatever it is just came out of the blue.

    I do get temperature flushes but they are not severe at all and fade within a couple of minutes, and they don't cause bumps or itchies either, so it really isn't in the same league.

    It's not my skin care - I tested this when I first started flushing by going water-only for a few weeks. No improvement! (But I did get really dry skin...)

    I've started taking a digestive enzyme with HCl with every meal. I haven't noticed any improvements yet but it's only been a day, so I'm going to give it a chance. I'm also taking aloe vera juice and probiotics. Hoping hoping hoping!

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    Senior Member Auburn's Avatar
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    Hi LadyBee,

    Quote Originally Posted by LadyBee View Post
    I tend to get sinus pressure/aching at the same time at flushing or just afterwards.
    Have you read Michael_V's posts? He's been coping with symptoms very similar to yours:

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael_V View Post
    On the minus side, it hasn't seemed to make a dent in my near constant flushing and burning or in the intermittent but maddening pressure at the bridge of my nose.
    He's been trying a number of treatments but, so far, nothing seems to be particularly helpful when it comes to the flushing and nose/sinus pressure.

    I've started taking a digestive enzyme with HCl with every meal. I haven't noticed any improvements yet but it's only been a day, so I'm going to give it a chance. I'm also taking aloe vera juice and probiotics. Hoping hoping hoping!
    Before you started experimenting with your diet, what were you normally eating? Could you list the foods/drinks you'd eat most often?

    Also, what kind of GI tract symptoms do you have (fast/slow digestion, diarrhea/constipation, bloating, acid reflux, etc.)? Stool color, has it become rather pale since your skin started to react?
    *
    I've treated seb derm successfully with raw honey and virgin coconut oil and have been symptom-free since June '09. Follow this ---> link <--- for details.

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