Here we go again….it’s been 2 ½ weeks on Prednisone to get this rash under control. It’s not gone by any means. But it’s not quite so hot, quite so itchy, and not all over my body any more. Hips, arms, hands and face are the last remaining areas resisting the drugs. So after another visit to the GP off I went to the dermatologist (again).
I’m a bit fed up with this rash. I figure something must be causing it and I’d actually like some allergy testing. But I’m being told I can’t have food/environmental allergy testing as eczema can’t be caused by those things. Two years ago I had patch testing which showed an allergy to Tocopheryl Acetate – that’s Vitamin E. Once it was identified I was able to clear out my cupboards of all sorts of shampoos, sun screens and makeup that had Vitamin E in it. Naturally as someone who sufferers from dry ski a lot of my lotions were chocked full of Vitamin E. It was, simply, very useful and solved the issue.
We may end up with patch testing again if this doesn’t clear up. My concern is that years of steroid creams are having a negative impact on my skin, it’s getting thin, and I bruise easily. Today, I was just given more, and told to come back in a month to six weeks. If the eczema isn’t cleared up by then, maybe patch testing will be recommended.
I left the dermatologist quite disheartened. More steroids on my already thin skin which isn’t want I want. I’d like an answer to what is making it flare so much. It feels like constantly treating the symptoms, not the cause. Last time it took 3 rounds of repeated Prednisone prescriptions before the patch testing was arranged.
This is frustrating – if I take a look at the Allergy Uk site I see the following:
Allergy tests (either skin prick testing or a specific IgE blood test) may help to identify airborne or food allergens involved in flares, as many people with atopic dermatitis/eczema may also have asthma, allergic rhinitis/hay fever. Allergens that trigger these may also trigger symptoms in eczema, such as house dust mite, animal dander, mould spores, pollen or foods. You may need to be referred to an allergy clinic for skin prick or specific IgE blood tests.
This seem pretty clear to me; some sort of allergy could be triggering it but I need testing to find out if I’ve developed (another) new allergy. Yet the dermatologist is clear – no skin prick or IgE blood tests will make a difference. My GP won’t refer unless the dermatologist says to. Which leaves me in limbo. Just using more and more steroids.
I’ve always avoided alternative medicine, much preferring to stick to science. But right now I’m feeling let down. Let down by the refusal to refer for allergy testing, let down by the disagreement about what causes eczema. Just left to continue to use medicine that has some fairly unpleasant long term side effects.
So…time to go get some help from somewhere else. In our high street is a Rivital outlet. A couple of friends swear by them. I’ve gone to see them today and they’ve recommended a couple of things to help. I’ve going to update regularly on how I’m getting on and if it’s making a difference. I can always go back to the steroid if I need to, right now, I need to try something different. Here was their advice.
Treat the inside of your body to help your skin. A good probiotic is the starting point. I already take one so that was a tick.
New to me were:
As embarrassing as it is, I’m going to leave my face as it is and continue with moisturisers only.
I’m really not keen on using steroids on my face. I may…may, try coconut oil.
The pictures show the current state of affairs, let’s see what the next few weeks bring.
In the meantime, if you’ve had similar experiences and found something that works do comment below and share your knowledge. I've added the links for the products so you can take a look if you're interested.
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Allergy UK is a great charity providing information and help for people with allergies.
Their hotline is staffed by wonderful people offering their help free of charge.
Their number is: 01322 619 898
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