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Considering Seeing The Derm Again


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#1 lostinthefog87

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 09:57 PM

I need some advice from you guys in this holistic forum.  Possibly the last rational people i've seen in regards to discussing acne.

I spoke to a dermatologist a few months back (not in person) who told me that it may be a good idea to get a culture taken of my acne to rule out gram negative folliculitis and staph.  

 

I was also considering going to my derm to try and ask "Why am I getting cystic acne?  Why me?  What can I do about it without a prescription?".  I also think I should get my hormones checked and an allergy test.

 

I hate going to mainstream physicians but its all I can afford under my insurance.  I just dread getting into an argument with these people as I know they will push accutane on me and look at me weirdly when I bring up food allergies, hormone imbalances, and possibly other bacteria causing my acne.

 

But i've been dealing with this thing for 10 years and I had to get on antibiotic cream again which I need to get off of eventually, so I think having these tests done are a good idea.  What do you guys think?  And did you ever have hormone checks or cultures taken and how did it effect your treatment from then on?



#2 Quetzlcoatl

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 12:14 AM

I would say the main cause of cysts is some sort of food sensitivity. It may or may not be worth it to get testing done. I did testing and found I was sensitive to several foods. Eating strictly, I was able to prevent myself from getting chest acne (but my face remained clogged - rarely cysts though). When I ate the sensitive foods again, the chest acne returned. I ended up taking colostrum for a couple weeks (as of a couple weeks ago) and have managed to almost entirely cure my chest acne while eating the sensitive foods. My face remains unchanged, but may improve later (much more severe).

 

I would start by cutting out common allergens like soy, wheat, dairy, and citrus. If you keep getting cysts after a week, you could try food testing. Of course, it could be gram neg bacteria, which would have very little to do with food sensitivities.



#3 sleptember

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 01:34 AM

What is your diet like?

What do you eat and what do you eliminate?

Are you consistent with your diet?

Have you identified any intolerances?

Do you suffer from any illnesses or experience regular bodily discomfort (aches, migraines, bloating, itchiness, regular colds, etc)?

Any psychological problems (anxiety, insomnia, poor mood, fatigue, etc)?


Edited by sleptember, 08 April 2013 - 01:36 AM.


#4 alternativista

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 06:56 AM

Have you tried an elimination diet? And I think the derm who suggested the tests rather than just prescribing antibiotics and accutane sounds better than average, although I don't think tose conditions look like cysts, but don't really know. Do your cysts appear in specific places.
Status: Clear after 30 years. Wow, I guess it's been 6 years, now.

[ Story: Severe Acne since I was 10. 10+ years of Dermatologists, Antibiotics, topicals and ACCUTANE did nothing. Discovered oranges triggered the worst of my cystic acne = about 70% improvement. Tried some nutrient supplements like B-complex with zinc and C, saw palmetto and a BHA like the aspirin mask = more improvement, a lot less oily. Then, Diet changes = Clear.

Regimen: Anti-inflammatory, nutrient dense, blood sugar stabilizing diet and supplements (for hormones, inflammation, aging, health). No soap or other cleanser except for hand washing! Water only or Oil cleanse. Aloe Vera mixed with niacinimide and a high linoleic acid oil for moisturizer and reduce pigmentation.

Diet effects acne in so many ways: hormone balance, inflammation, Insulin levels, digestion, allergies and intolerances, liver function, adrenal function, SHBG levels, sebum quality, cell function and turnover, nutrient deficiencies, body fat, etc. Basic advice: Eat, sleep, supplement and exercise like you are a diabetic. And eat real food!

For more information, see my Good Things for Acne thread *Moderator edit - Please refer to the board rules (see “Advertising/soliciting”, “Linking” and “Signatures”)*

When you eat stuff, Stuff Happens!

#5 lostinthefog87

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 01:50 AM

Have you tried an elimination diet? And I think the derm who suggested the tests rather than just prescribing antibiotics and accutane sounds better than average, although I don't think tose conditions look like cysts, but don't really know. Do your cysts appear in specific places.

 

In the last 6 months, I have limited dairy by 90%.   I used to drink 24 oz of milk a day and plenty of cheese, and now I only have 3 tablespoons of milk a day in my tea.  I decreased my intake of refined carbs by quite a lot too.  Mind you, the derm I talked to recently who told me to get a culture told me this was to identify the bacteria so it can be treated with an antibiotic that it is sensitive to...so maybe he's not so better than average?  At least he didn't tell me to get on Accutane.  If it is negative gram folliculitis I am screwed, because there is really nothing you can do for it except Accutane, or, rounds of heavy penicillin type antibiotics for the rest of your life.  That scares me and makes me want to get off my clindamycin gel very, very soon.   

 

The majority of my cysts occurs on my chin, neck, and inner cheeks.  I also get acne around my mouth frequently (cysts and nodules too, fun!). This mouth acne has only happened in the year, which I find odd.  Never before did I get lip acne that bad until about one year back, and I cannot find a reason why.  During this time I also developed nose acne, which I never had before.  I have tried to go without topicals and use water only/cleanser only, but the nodules and cysts get so painful I actually cannot sleep and have trouble eating. It also affects my job in real estate, as I am constantly dealing with clients and having cystic acne in very uncomfortable and visible places is an embarrassment and I feel I look unprofessional and dirty (although I know that's not true in actuality).  

 

Although I am a believer in natural medicine, this last year I have really tried to incorporate healthier eating habits, lifestyle changes, etc. and my acne seems to have worsened. I think getting a culture would probably at least give me an answer to whether or not I have the negative gram bacteria, because, if I do I need to stop taking clindamycin immediately as it is useless.  


 

What is your diet like?

What do you eat and what do you eliminate?

Are you consistent with your diet?

Have you identified any intolerances?

Do you suffer from any illnesses or experience regular bodily discomfort (aches, migraines, bloating, itchiness, regular colds, etc)?

Any psychological problems (anxiety, insomnia, poor mood, fatigue, etc)?

 

Diet is probably not the best, but not the worst.  Beef, chicken, tuna, turkey, pork as proteins, normally baked but sometimes fried or in a stew/sauce.  Assorted veggies such as carrots, green beans, broccoli, coliflower, corn, peas, lettuce, and v8 juice (low sodium).  I don't eat a lot of fruit.  Carbs come from brown rice, whole wheat pasta, legumes such as kidney beans and pinto beans, lentils, quinoa, and sometimes white potatoes (although I have tried to limit that, but it's difficult for me). Typical dishes I make are baked chicken thighs marinated in bbq sauce or italian dressing with a side of brown rice and steamed assorted veggies, or beef and bean chili with tomatoes, onions, celery, and garlic. Often I will just have a steak too for lunch with veggies.  I make enchiladas without cheese quite often.  Basically, commonly eaten foods but with no dairy and substituting brown rice/whole wheat pasta for regular etc. and trying to limit preserved/frozen foods.  I do not eat soda or candy, and fast food is a rarity.   I have tried more recently to eat even less grains, while upping my intake of legumes and veggies.

 

To answer your other questions, I have decreased dairy (no cheese, and only milk is in my tea 3x a day) and refined carbs, no other huge changes..  I would say I am pretty consistent but not perfect.  A few times a week I may splurge and eat a hamburger,or potato chips, french fries, cookies, etc.  I have not identified intolerances yet, as my acne never seems to calm down.   I do suffer from migraines here and there.  I have back pain sometimes, and muscles spasms a few times a year (once it was very severe which required some heavy duty muscle relaxers).  I get itchy often, sometimes uncontrollable whenever I get stressed or exercise, thats new.  It is an all over body itch the lasts for minutes.  

 

I am prone to depression.  I have a history of panic attacks and agoraphobia (although I have conquered those for the most part), but I am easily made anxious and many times, the majority of my day is spent trying to calm myself and relax.  It used to be much worse.   I actually had to take time off of college because I was having daily panic attacks and I became completely homebound for a year.  Also, much of my teen/early adult years were spent in rehabs and psychiatrist offices.  I am a former alcoholic/drug addict (hard drugs), but I have been recovered for 5 years.   

 

That being said, I fixate on my face a lot and get so stressed out about my acne. I picked up smoking cigarettes again after quitting for a while because of the stress.  In short, my emotional health is far from perfect but it is lightyears ahead of what it used to be.  I  now do a great job in my opinion in managing my emotional issues through deep breathing, acceptance, and coping skills which I learned from an excellent holistic minded Psychologist I saw for many years.  I  now have a great career, a recently purchased house, and a very supportive and understanding fiancee.  To come from where I was at in my earlier years to where I am at now, I am immensely proud, and  a changed man for good.  That is why I get so mad, at the most healthiest time of my life with so much I have accomplished, why am I still dealing with cystic acne?  

 

Sorry for the long post guys, just thought i'd get it all out there.


Edited by lostinthefog87, 09 April 2013 - 03:03 AM.


#6 sleptember

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 03:52 AM

Lostinthefog87,

 

Thanks for sharing.

 

From what I've read, I think you could benefit from attempting a very strict elimination diet. You seem to be suffering a lot of the same symptoms I had when I was eating foods that I was sensitive to. (I also spent spent some time in psych units and was on anti-psychotics and a range of other drugs. I thought there was something irreparably wrong with my brain - actually, it was just a gluten intolerance that was fucking me up. Seriously. An intolerance can have that much of an impact on your body and mind.)

 

Please give some serious consideration to intolerance. I would advise you first totally eliminate gluten, dairy, and refined sugar. It's not as difficult as it seems and it could change your life. Take it from me.



#7 alternativista

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Posted 09 April 2013 - 06:04 AM

There are many other things you could be intolerant to. And even small amounts could produce a reaction.
Status: Clear after 30 years. Wow, I guess it's been 6 years, now.

[ Story: Severe Acne since I was 10. 10+ years of Dermatologists, Antibiotics, topicals and ACCUTANE did nothing. Discovered oranges triggered the worst of my cystic acne = about 70% improvement. Tried some nutrient supplements like B-complex with zinc and C, saw palmetto and a BHA like the aspirin mask = more improvement, a lot less oily. Then, Diet changes = Clear.

Regimen: Anti-inflammatory, nutrient dense, blood sugar stabilizing diet and supplements (for hormones, inflammation, aging, health). No soap or other cleanser except for hand washing! Water only or Oil cleanse. Aloe Vera mixed with niacinimide and a high linoleic acid oil for moisturizer and reduce pigmentation.

Diet effects acne in so many ways: hormone balance, inflammation, Insulin levels, digestion, allergies and intolerances, liver function, adrenal function, SHBG levels, sebum quality, cell function and turnover, nutrient deficiencies, body fat, etc. Basic advice: Eat, sleep, supplement and exercise like you are a diabetic. And eat real food!

For more information, see my Good Things for Acne thread *Moderator edit - Please refer to the board rules (see “Advertising/soliciting”, “Linking” and “Signatures”)*

When you eat stuff, Stuff Happens!




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