Thursday, September 26, 2013

Did you ever wonder.....

....why eczema is deemed allergenic in nature when diagnosed in a child, yet auto-immune as an adult?  I questioned this in my 20's.  I couldn't wrap my brain around the doctors telling me my eczema was now auto-immune.  I kept thinking that was wrong some how.  That a disease does not change it's stripes going from childhood to adulthood.  Juvenile (or type I) diabetes does not become adult diabetes (or type II) once the child turns 18.  They will always have type I diabetes.  It doesn't change.  So how can eczema just change because you become an adult?  It doesn't.  However the use of steroid creams causes the body to reject the skin over time as the skin cells are no longer what the body deems as normal - they are different after being changed by the cortisone.  The body rejects the changed cells, turning on the person's skin.  We are more like organ donor rejects than burn victims. 

For the last few months I couldn't understand why I have not seen one shred of improvement.  Not one!  I still have poor capillary refill - my skin stays white a long time after being rubbed.  My skin cannot tolerate 20 minutes in the sun (this was tested last week and my face swelled up and oozed like crazy).  I cannot stop itching no matter what I do or try.  I cannot stop the pain or the dryness, or (fill in the blank).  I am not getting better because my body has yet to make the right skin cells - the ones my body was meant to make.  The cells replicate into the changed cortisone cells that my body rejects.  So I itch and ooze and stay inflamed.  I am at high risk for infections because my body is in a state of rejection.  So my skin becomes infected with staph much more easily than normal people. 

Anti-rejection or autoimmune drugs like cyclosporine or methotrexate would help because they suppress the immune system therefore suppressing the rejection.  But taking those drugs leaves one open for infections and liver damage.  I am not going to exchange one serious problem for another.  I am going to let my body remember how to make the right skin cells without further harming my body.  I will explore natural alternatives that may help the body remember the right way to make the right cells.  But if that is not possible, then I will accept that time is my only option.  I just wish there was a reset button for the body.  A button we could press to tell it to go back to the way it is supposed to be - the way it was before steroid creams were slathered on our skin. 

I am just thankful to finally figure this out.  To finally know what is happening to my skin.  Not knowing was killing me - I was trying to fix my skin without fully understanding what was happening to it through this process.  Understanding things is crucial to me - I have a scientific/mathematical brain - I HAVE to know how things work.  Not knowing bothers me to no end.  Now that I know, I can move on - I can move through the pain and suffering much easier. 


  1. i am kind of like you Tracy!
    Have to know HOW and WHY things work.
    it makes sense about the skin cells. you have to grow out the bad skin.

  2. What you say makes a lot of sense! I suppose this is another reason as to why the phrase "time is a healer" exists. Just keep plodding on and having hope xx