Posted by: eczemancipated | February 13, 2013

Thick Skin

In June of 2012, after a viral infection attacked my arm, I learned the ways of bandaging my worst open wounds and Xeroforming when necessary. I didn’t suffer any further infections that required emergency room visits once I started bandaging daily.

In January 2013, Dr. Rapaport told me I should stop bandaging my arms because he felt the skin was much thicker so to speak and the bandages were just holding the heat in which would ultimately cause a flare or itching. So I took his advice. From then forward I stopped bandaging my mid forearm to my mid upper arm. But I have continued to bandage my fingers, hands and wrists.

Within a week of removing the arm bandages, I scratched the inside of my arm (the otherside of my elbow) into oblivion during my sleep. Unfortunately, I was no longer protecting this area with bandages and wasn’t mentally prepared to not scratch the area.

Immediately I noticed that something looked funny the next day in the area where I scratched. So I Tea Tree oiled the area a couple times, but the next day after that began my chasing an infection that became quite serious. It spread from my arm to my neck, chin, upper lip, left eyelid and brow, forehead and into my hair line.

2 urgent care visits in 7 days and trip to the local derm later, I received the culture tests results back. It wasn’t MRSA thank goodness. The cultures were positive for both a Staph Bacteria and a Viral infection so I went on 2 days of Valtex and a 6 day Z pack. Not to mention Mupurcin and triple antibiotic ointment for the affected areas.

What had saved my face though was that before I received the test results I had applied Abreva to the affected areas which seemed to keep them from spreading. I also continued to apply the Tea Tree oil and did a couple of apple cider vinegar compresses. My arm and forehead were totally cleared up by the time they got the culture results back. So it wasn’t as scary to deal with the rest of it.

It took me a total of 3 weeks to recover. I was extremely tired during that time and pretty depressed. My mom and dad were calling me everyday to cheer me up.

It’s been about a month since the infections cleared. I saw Dr. Rapaport a couple weeks ago. He is really happy about my progress, he even said “I hesitate to tell you that maybe you are coming near to the end of this.” (I am guessing that is because I’m a 36 year user and only 9 months off steroids. Technically I shouldn’t be this well until between 18 and 36 months off steroids, as his original assessment was 1 month for every 1 year of usage. But I have been doing amazingly well despite the crazy infections. So who knows.)

I still bandage my hands and wrists. But what I have noticed is that my arm skin has really thickened and doesn’t cut up when I scratch it anymore. Just that one time that started the infection. But they still get pretty itchy and will the flaking never end or what guys?


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