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Thread: Does this sound like P&P rosacea?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2013

    Default Does this sound like P&P rosacea?

    Hello everyone, I've bounced over here from the SD forum as well. I've been suffering from a variety of now disfiguring facial conditions since August after becoming infected with HSV-1. I was hoping someone could maybe clear up the difference between P&P rosacea and acne vulgaris, as my dermatologists cannot.

    I also apologize in advance for my somewhat graphic pustule details.

    I have had mild acne since a teenager. Black heads, a few white heads, and those "typical" zit-comedones. Typical zits would come on before my periods, usually, and involve isolated soreness, come to a head, and be pop-able, with a white core chunk that came out. Then they would heal. They would be "stand-alone" zits, not in clusters.

    I never had any symptoms of rosacea or SD, and it does not run in my family.

    10 days after a severe HSV-1 primary outbreak, I woke up and my face had exploded. In addition to my regular acne, I now developed huge nodular sores, composed mostly of blood, with a hard kernel inside. These looked almost like impetiginous lesions, and some were infected with staph. I had symptoms of SD all over my face and scalp, and my hair began to fall out from the root in wads.

    I also began to get inflammation all over my face. It was widespread, and my face itched and burned like mad. It felt like a "film" was on it.

    This is when the new zits appeared that I began to wonder about. They are different than the acne ones I know. Some are small red bumps that never come to a head, but are delicate, and if you hit them, they bleed a lot. The others are smaller, and look almost like whiteheads, but are not. They come up in clusters around each other, incredibly fast (in a matter of hours), and are usually preceded by intense itching in the area and inflammation. They are shallower and more delicate. Some dry up fast and just "flake" off. Others can be popped, but are either dry, containing mostly watery yellow pus mixed with blood. All of them feel like they are on the surface of the skin more, and bleed more than a normal zit would. They seem to behave more like infected blisters than the zits I know. The same ones can keep reappearing in the same inflamed spot for days as well.

    Even when they are popped, the inflammation in my face does not stop. I have red spots of inflammation all over, and my skin is now a permanent bronzy-color. (I was incredibly fair-skinned.)

    The last clue to the puzzle is the flushing. I have never flushed in my life, but now I do constantly. It is my entire face, and looks like I am choking on something. I know rosacea flushing has triggers, but it seems like EVERYTHING triggers my flushing. I cannot bend over. I cannot laugh. I can't get nervous. I can't get embarrassed. I can't cry. I can't EAT (because CHEWING causes the flushing, which then brings on the itching.) I can't even lie down to sleep at night because it brings it on. I can't exercise. I can't go in direct sunlight. It all seems too severe. For 16 weeks, I could not wash my face with anything but cotton pads and water because layers of skin sloughed off.

    It seems like a rapid onset for rosacea, so I am confused. I can try and upload some pictures if that would be helpful. (Though I'm not sure how.) I ended up in the hospital recently from this, because of 5 months of sleep deprivation and being unable to eat enough food due to the flushing and pain.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. I don't know where to go from here. Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2014


    My goodness, I'm so sorry you're going through this. I don't know if I can help you with diagnosing it, but I do have a few thoughts about some of what you wrote.

    Quote Originally Posted by ComplicatedChart View Post
    Even when they are popped, the inflammation in my face does not stop. I have red spots of inflammation all over, and my skin is now a permanent bronzy-color. (I was incredibly fair-skinned.)
    I would really discourage you from trying to pop your p&ps. It's not a zit like you got as a teenager. It isn't going to do anything for your overall condition, just perhaps aggravate it further.

    Also, you mentioned that this started after your HSV-1 onset. Many people here have had great success with l-lysine supplements, usually taken in tandem with vitamin c and zinc. I know that lysine is commonly used to treat herpes, so it would seem like a natural conclusion to make that this would help your rosacea as well. It's definitely worth a shot. You'll need to break up your dosage throughout the day, something like 3,000-5,000 mg of lysine and maybe 2,000-3,000 mg vitamin c. It sounds like a lot, I know, and I can't tell you exactly how much to take and when, but there are posts about it around here. I wish I could just give you mine, I tried it and it didn't work for me over the short period of time that I gave it, and then my naturopath told me to cut it out altogether (just because she didn't believe that would help, not because it's harmful.).

    Good luck!!

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