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Scary results from TCA 25%

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I just did a 25% TCA peel (from loganwood) 6 days ago. I went through all the messages on this board and didn't find a similar case, so I'm creating a new thread here.

Maybe I shouldn't have picked or maybe I should have prep my skin longer before I did the peel, anyways after 6 days, my skin still looks terribly red, irritated, and the scariest thing is, it itches horribly (so much that I couldn't sleep at night, and I still wake up in the morning scratching it because it's driving me crazy), and my skin is TERRIBLY BUMPY. I don't know what's happening and I am so frightened by all this I'm afraid I'm going to be scared very badly. I have been putting triple antibiotic on (I did try to put some super cp serum on the third and fourth day, but it was too painful and I dropped it. Besides I suspect that it caused the horrible bumpiness and even some acne!)

Please give me some advice on this... will this somehow improve in a few days' time or should I go straight to the derm? I'm so scared...

Thank you for reading!!

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Is there any chance that you're allergic to the triple antibiotic ointment? I had an allergic reaction to a topical antibiotic ointment that I used for a couple of days. The rash was unbearably itchy and bumpy. It was also kind of oozy as I recall. (The ooziness might have been AFTER I scratched it; I can't remember.) Stopping the antibiotic ointment didn't resolve the rash right away. In my case the doctor prescribed a strong topical steroid cream that cleared the rash up really quickly.

If I was suffering like you are right now and didn't know what was going on so I couldn't self-treat, I would try to go to a dermatologist as soon as possible (like tomorrow).

In the meantime, please, please, try anything not to scratch! I know it's really hard, but some people have suggested wearing oven mitts on your hands or tying your hands up at night to avoid scratching.

Good luck and take care!

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I just did a 25% TCA peel (from loganwood) 6 days ago. I went through all the messages on this board and didn't find a similar case, so I'm creating a new thread here.

Maybe I shouldn't have picked or maybe I should have prep my skin longer before I did the peel, anyways after 6 days, my skin still looks terribly red, irritated, and the scariest thing is, it itches horribly (so much that I couldn't sleep at night, and I still wake up in the morning scratching it because it's driving me crazy), and my skin is TERRIBLY BUMPY. I don't know what's happening and I am so frightened by all this I'm afraid I'm going to be scared very badly. I have been putting triple antibiotic on (I did try to put some super cp serum on the third and fourth day, but it was too painful and I dropped it. Besides I suspect that it caused the horrible bumpiness and even some acne!)

Please give me some advice on this... will this somehow improve in a few days' time or should I go straight to the derm? I'm so scared...

Thank you for reading!!

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Dance, Yes that's exactly what happened to me! It was disgustingly oozy too! I think the triple antibiotic is causing this! thank you so much for the advice. now I know what to do! Just that, oh my with this face I won't want to walk out of my apartment at all.... how did you mange it?

so unlucky to be allergic to an antibiotic... an antibiotic, I mean. why???

kamstan, thank you very much for the advice! do you think it'll be better to do a jessner's peel next time instead of a tca ? I think I'm going to get bad hyperpigmentation from this peel, though my scars seem to have improved. Some questions on the jessner's peel(since you seem to be an expert in this smile.gif) Does it help hyperpigmentation? What is the expected downtime? (oh I feel like I'm sitting in a prison here because of my tca peel. I want to see people!) I'd try to make an appointment with my derm tomorrow(though she never really has time for anyone). Chances are i'll have to wait one whole week, till then I hope my skin would have become less red.

Dance, it was really terrible wasn't it? I feel so sorry for us! In my opinion, it's nice that we get free antibiotics from Loganwood, yet they should have considered the fact that it could make some of their clients suffer so much, that maybe it would have been better to give out a milder ointment, or just tell their clients to use emu oil or something.. I regret having used the triple antibiotic ointment! I really could have just used the emu oil! stupid stupid stupid!!!

Thank you all very much !!

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Dance, Yes that's exactly what happened to me! It was disgustingly oozy too! I think the triple antibiotic is causing this! thank you so much for the advice. now I know what to do! Just that, oh my with this face I won't want to walk out of my apartment at all.... how did you mange it?

so unlucky to be allergic to an antibiotic... an antibiotic, I mean. why???

kamstan, thank you very much for the advice! do you think it'll be better to do a jessner's peel next time instead of a tca ? I think I'm going to get bad hyperpigmentation from this peel, though my scars seem to have improved. Some questions on the jessner's peel(since you seem to be an expert in this smile.gif) Does it help hyperpigmentation? What is the expected downtime? (oh I feel like I'm sitting in a prison here because of my tca peel. I want to see people!) I'd try to make an appointment with my derm tomorrow(though she never really has time for anyone). Chances are i'll have to wait one whole week, till then I hope my skin would have become less red.

Dance, it was really terrible wasn't it? I feel so sorry for us! In my opinion, it's nice that we get free antibiotics from Loganwood, yet they should have considered the fact that it could make some of their clients suffer so much, that maybe it would have been better to give out a milder ointment, or just tell their clients to use emu oil or something.. I regret having used the triple antibiotic ointment! I really could have just used the emu oil! stupid stupid stupid!!!

Thank you all very much  !!

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STT - Severe itching can be a sign of infection. I would get to the doctor if I were you, especially if you have any open wounding on your face. The doctor can determine if you need medication to clear it up. If you get a staph or strep infection on your face you could end up with additional scarring. I did get an infection after 30% TCA, so I speak from experience.

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kamstan, It did not become like this until like day 2 or 3, which means, only after several days of applying the ointment. And thank you very much! I will definitely try out the J-Peel! Seems better for me because I have acne and my scars are actually not very deep. It's just the hyperpigmentation that is really bothering me.

Wildcard, it sounds really scary! I hope it's not an infection! I have no open wounding, just very bumpy and red skin now. Did you have to deal with hyperpigmentation afterwards?

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wildcard, do you remember how you got the infection? Did your derm tell you what went wrong? What is staph/strep infection ? I feel so unlucky and afraid... god what did I do to my skin? I hope it would heal... did it take very long for you to heal from your infection? I was so stupid to have done the peel.. though, why did it not work for me when it works for everyone else? I read so many threads about the peel, and it gave generally such great results. I don't know anymore.... just desperate and depressed... thank you guys for being so supportive, still!

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STT, I didn't use the antibiotic ointment on my whole face, but the rash I got was still very nasty. I wanted to hide! I feel for you, and hope you heal up quickly!

I don't think it's bad of Loganwood to include antibiotic ointment. Antibiotic ointments are commonly prescribed by doctors, and are apparently very effective at preventing infection (which is very important). Allergies are tough, because until you have a reaction to something, you don't know that you're allergic to it.

I agree with Wildcard that infection is also a possibility. It's not hard to get a skin infection when the surface of the skin is compromised by an injury, like a wound or a peel. FYI - skin infections are often treated with prescription ointments like Bactroban or with oral antibiotics. The dermatologist will be able to tell what's going on and how to fix it.

Take care!

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Im as mad a scientist as anyone but I have been surprised by how young the other mad scientists on this board are and that more bad outcomes havent been reported. I didnt have my first scar treatment done by a Dr till I was 30 and didnt do my first self administered needling treatment till recently aged 44.

I cant help thinking that some folks are way too young and naive to be having scar revisions yet. I imagined most posters on this forum were middle aged like me who had been around the block a few times but then I see pics of fresh faced kids and Im left wondering as to the wisdom of it all.  eusa_think.gif

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Thank you soo much dance! I have been to the derm already. She was rather cross that I did peels myself, and prescribed some kind of steroid cream (in an extremely hostile manner). So I think I was allergic to the antibiotic ointment, like you were. I read that the cream is not supposed to be used for longer than 10 days. Was it also the case for you?

How long did it take for you to get over the allergy? I'm eager to see my skin return to normal....

did you suffer from hyperpigmentation afterwards?

HOnestly, your advice has SAVED me!(want to give you a big hug...) I thought it was normal for my skin to itch and swell for a day or two, and didn't know that it was an allergy! The thing is a lot of people have had great results with tca, and allergies are so unpredictable, you can almost only find out that you're allergic to things by going through the allergic symptoms yourself. I guess dance and I were just unlucky..

Thank you thank you thank you soooo much!!! I hope the recovery would be quick!

P.S. Pete, I understand your argument. But it's not that I used too strong a peel without having done the research first. I also consulted my derm (though I didn't want to pay her for the peel) and I knew more or less what to expect. Just that an allergy is very unpredictable. I would have suffered the same if I had let my derm do the peel for me, since she wouldn't have reckoned with the allergy either.

In a society where people increasingly judge others by their looks, (it's not only the media's fault, but I believe it is largely responsible for it) it is very difficult for you to overcome the unease (I won't call it vanity) of having a scarred and unevenly pigmented face, which is almost the first thing people look at when they interact. In many cases, especially in the service industry, good skin (and a decent appearance) does mean better job opportunities. It is sad and cruel, but this is just reality. Besides, using makeup to hide blemishes only make the skin worse. It also prevents you from engaging in a more active lifestyle(especially for a female). I believe that there is always a mix of a bit of vanity and much necessity in our attempts to fight scars and acne. We just want to have a clean, clear face. We are not talking about augmenting breasts or fixing noses here, which I would regard as really vain. And yet again, I do understand your argument. The point is not to overdo it, just like everything else in our lives.

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after doing a 25% TCA peel, you should apply nothing except vaseline. That's what I do and I peel perfectly. The itchiness and redness seemed normal to me. Just keep your hands busy and don't scratch it. If it is already quite long and your skin doesn't peel, i guess it is time for you to do some workout and sweat it out. After sweating, you will definitely peel.

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Thank you soo much dance! I have been to the derm already. She was rather cross that I did peels myself, and prescribed some kind of steroid cream (in an extremely hostile manner). So I think I was allergic to the antibiotic ointment, like you were. I read that the cream is not supposed to be used for longer than 10 days. Was it also the case for you?

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I don't know if this will help at all but I would recommend drinking as much water (filtered/pure) as you can. My skin tends to get itchy because it is always on the dry side (I swear this is partly because of accutane) but when I am drinking lots of water this doesn't happen. So maybe it could help a little? Sounds like the main problem is with the triple antibiotic - man this board is so helpful!!! But it could help.

Also, I just did a post about vitamin C and how mega doses of it (1000 mg pills, 3-5 at a time, 2-3 times a day) caused a cut in my mouth to practically vanish in half the time it normally would take. I swear I've never seen anything like it. Maybe this could help your skin a little? Just a suggestion. I've heard some doctors use this method to speed up patients who are recovering from surgery. If you did this, though, I'd recommend drinking even more water, as vitamin c is very acidic, and I don't know how it would react with your skin in particular, I just know it worked wonders for me.

Anyway good luck, I hope you are able to heal quickly!!!

Libby

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wow you guys are so helpful!! thank you for all the tips! I really hope that people would report more problems than only success stories on the board, for we all learn from mistakes! Dance, it really seems that the itchiness is not that bad anymore. I'm just waiting for the bumpiness to go as well!

LibbyM, the Vitamin C project is definitely worth undertaking. I just am too timid to go to the supermarket now to buy mu supplements! But next time before I do a peel, I'll first shop for lots and lots of Vit C smile.gif!

Memories, vaseline seems to be a great idea (I'll never use triple antibiotic anymore! my derm said yesterday, oh that's known to cause allergies. Who prescribed it? then I said, well I did the peel myself and it came with the peel. She gave me such an angry look!) Do you think that Emu oil will also do??

Maybe steaming the face at the end of the peeling process would help the last bit of dead skin to fall off? Has anyone here tried ? It's disgusting to put make up on to hide the redness when there's still so much dead skin hanging on the face!

I asked my derm a dozen times, if I would have hyperpigmentation issues. She was so reluctant to answer it, I guess it's just because I did the peel myself, and she was like, oh it's not my problem you know. But in the end she's like, if you don't go out to the sun and are "lucky", you won't have pigmentation problems. That is no answer at all is it? How can you tell your client to depend on luck? anyways I'm going to hibernate for another week, and for the coming month if I do go out, I'd only go out at night.

I think if you're not constantly looking at the mirror when you peel, you'll get the best peel results! So if you're living with your family, try to get distracted by talking more and doing more things with them. You'll not be tempted to pick at your scaps when you're busy with something else!

I will post my progress (hopefully positive) regularly. Thank you all !!

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Don't feel bad. I'm also allergic to antibiotic ointment, but only when it's on my face. I'm also allergic to band-aids, belt buckles, wasps stings, perfumes, cheap jewelry, many lotions, etc. eusa_wall.gif

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STT - Glad you went to the Dr. ...(FYI) The Dr. who did my TCA went too deep in a couple of areas, they later crusted over and scabbed. They became very itchy, I used vaseline and cool washcloths to lessen the desire to scratch..anyway, the scabs cracked and I transmitted staph from my hands to my face. Honestly, I thought I was scarred without recourse, but over time the areas healed pretty well. There is some residual pigment problem around the front of my ear, but I hide it with hair. Good luck, hope things improve for you soon.

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Wildcard, I can't believe that your Dr. made you go through so much pain! Did you have at least some of your scars improved? I'd say that going to a derm for peels guarantees that it's more expensive, but not safer! It must have been a very depressive experience -- expecting that your skin would improve a lot, while in the end it worsened! I totally feel this way...

I am praying that I won't be hyper hyperpigmented.. I already bought mandelic acid serum 10%. I will wait until the skin has returned to its "normal state", then treat the hyperpigmentation with this topical. Probably some lactic and/or Jessner peels weekly.

I hope I would see, in the futuer, more reports on the complications of peels and more aggressive procedures on this board. I get the feeling that we tend to be sometimes over-optimistic about things. I have done a considerable amount of research before I did my own peel, yet I haven't read anything about allergies to antibiotics or to the peels themselves on all the websites and different message boards I've been to. I find this a little strange. When you read about other plastic surgeries, they always warn you that you can possibly die from them. I think if I had read that you can get bad allergies from doing the peel (either from the peel itself or from the antibiotic ointment etc.), I would have probably just stuck to AHA cream+CP serum. Sighs.... Don't know if I can sell my peels to someone else. I only used them once! that was a big waste of money!(and the shipping was.... sighs....I'm trying to forget how much it cost)

Again, I hope I can control myself and not expect too much from the mandelic serum. I read so many good things about it, almost too good to be true. I think I should finally quit experimenting, and just use one product to the end, AND look less into the mirror. That should help!

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SST,

Did you dilute the TCA yourself? I am just wondering if you might have a stronger concentration than 25%. If this was your first peel 25% might have been a bit much. I am afraid to even try the 12.5% peel without the test patch first. Sort of verifies that what you got from the TCA seller is the right %. I am sure there have been cases where someone recieved 100% by mistake instead of 50% let's say, and thought they diluted to 25% while it was actually 50%. Even if you got it from them as 25% and didn't dilute it yourself they might have screwed up and gave you 50% or worst 100%.

I imagine it's much better to always to a test patch with each new batch of TCA. Much better safe than sorry. I have read stories about doctors accidentally apply 100% TCA to people thinking it was already diluted. One woman had this happen and could never go out in the sun ever again! They said her face looked like hamburger. Not trying to scare you but this stuff is serious stuff. I am sure you'll be fine. Just be careful!

Colin

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SST

When I had my derma-k (CO2 + erbium laser) the doc told me to clean and apply vaseline every 4 hours or so. After about 4 days I developed an itch and he told me to watch out for this. I called him and told him and he said to switch to some other kind of creme. I wish I could be sure, but I think he was concerned about a fungal infection (and possibly a reaction to the vaseline). Do those antibiotic creams stop fungus from growing?--I don't think so, only bacteria. If you think about it, fungi like to grow in dead, damp, and dark places.

So it seems to me that we run the risk of not only picking up a staph infection but also fungal infections.....somewhat luck somewhat hygiene technique and also how your immune system is functioning, your allergies, etc.

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thank you guys for replying! In the end my derm said I didn't get an infection, and I think I should thank Jesus Buddha and Allah for that smile.gif

It's now the 8th day after peel, and the 4th day of using the steroid cream to alleviate my allergy to triple antibiotic. Little by little the skin that is still bright pink is peeling (scabs have all fallen off). I really hope that when all the dead skin has peeled of, I would not be hyperpigmented.... maybe I should set up an altar at home and start praying to the gods LOL.

It's a pity that I won't be able to show the bumpiness of the skin resulting from the allergy on a digital camera (mine only shows how brown and then red my skin's become).

In any case all these complications related to chemical peels are really making me rethink how I should treat my scars in the future. I guess peels are very good in improving wrinkled and sun-damaged skin. Older patients may find peels amazing because they will experience an overall improvement in skin texture. Whereas for patients who have relatively good skin quality and are just seeking a remedy for redmarks and shallow scarring, there are better alternatives to strong peels like glycolic >50% and tca.

I guess I should have just used an AHA topical plus the CP....but I'm learning from my mistakes and fortunately, it seems that this particular one I just made is still reversible---just takes a little longer. I used to think that my skin quality is so bad that i need a complete revision. Now I see that the new skin that is growing beneath is not fundamentally different than the skin I used to have before. It's only the acne, redmarks and some scars that made me look old--good and bad news at the same time. In the end the tca peel wasn't worth 2 weeks of "home imprisonment"....

I hope I can keep the tca peel until I start to develop wrinkes LOL!

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STT - Unfortunately the TCA did not give me any improvement in scars (depressed scars), it does however help remove any sun damage. I would never do it again simply because it did not produce any lasting results. I guess it may work for those who are concerned with discoloration in the skin from acne, but even my doctor told me that it would not help shallow depressed scarring. Wirebrush dermabrasion is the only thing that has given me noticable improvement in scars.

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Wildcard, I agree. I don't see much improvement in my scars either, except that they are swollen and red. I will be doing less aggressive peels for more gradual but steady improvement in skin tone and texture instead of a 25% tca peel in the future.

I read a lot of good things about Pure Deming's Intense Gel, though it has not been mentioned lately on the board. Anyone still using it? Does it really fade redmarks or does it rather moisturise the skin thus making it look better overall? I have bought some Japanese whitening masks saying that they use the latest Nanotechnology whereby the whitening particles will penetrate much more effectively into the skin than conventional products. I am thinking maybe they do the same thing as Intense Gel, so I'm hesitating whether or not I should buy it. Can anyone tell me what Intense Gel really does?

Concluding my painful and dreary experience I'd have to say that the tca peel was a lot of pain(I didn't imagine it to burn that painfully!) and I need to stay at home for at least 2 weeks because of that. It really isn't worth it...well, not to waste the tca I already bought, I might do some very diluted peels like 12.5%, in case I have a week off in bitter-cold winter when I'd want to hibernate anyways LOL.

I've become so lazy and my biological clock is completely screwed up -- I sleep when the sun rises and get up only in the afternoon when I feel hungry. I don't have the courage to see my boyfriend during the downtime and I sort of miss him now sad.gif I HATE TCA PEELS!

I strongly recommend people who do not have photodamaged or badly wrinkled skin to use something else to tackle their redmarks and scarring. I understand that TCA might seem a quick fix at first sight, but now I've read more reports of hyperpigmentation and temporary raising of scars. So in the end, you spend more time treating the hyperpigmentation and get no real improvement in depressed scarring and lose 2 weeks of holidays. Even if you're not scarred or hyperpigmented after the tca peel, your face will remain red/pink for several weeks after the peel, which means you won't see real results until at least a month later. Now if you use lactic or glycolic peels every weekend, there is practically no downtime, and in a month's time you would have performed at least 4 peels, although they're weaker ones, but I believe it still beats staying 2 weeks at home and having irritable skin for another 2 weeks! Just consider the fact that a TCA peel (i'm not talking about TCA cross though, which is a localised treatment and a much more potent solution, like 50%-100%, is used) doesn't help scarring, neither do lactic/glycolic peels! They all just exfoliate the skin, nothing more.

I was stupid not to have done some simple maths before I went for the tca! Hope I'm not growing fat staying at home and not working out:( oh well, I have to cheer myself up a bit!

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Thanks for the warnings and let’s know how it all goes when you can venture out of your home as usual again.

Pigmentation is a definite concern for me because I am of olive complexion although extremely pale from avoiding the sun. Who knows, maybe I’ll be turned down as a candidate because of this. Having an olive complexion can totally SUCK sometimes. I’m in my 30’s and fortunately don’t have pitted scarring but the scar tissue I have didn’t shift a bit after 2 modified Jessner’s and medical strength micro-derm, so I wanted something stronger.

If I go ahead with this peel I might get on Dr Perricone’s Promise diet to decrease inflammation (maybe this could help a little with healing as I suffer from redness too), will take heaps of vitamin C (thanks LibbyM!!) and will seriously avoid antibiotic cream (thanks STT and everyone else!!).

I went to another Dr about erbium but was warned against it being of olive tone and not wrinkled enough from any sun damage. She recommended a series of 3 Danne` Alkaline peels for my scars that go deeper than mod jessner's but no one seems to have heard of here. The web site about Danne` doesn’t seem to go into the peels and they only show pictures of a guy treated with their products for acne: http://www.dannemking.com/results_acnevulgaris.html

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After the tca peel I do get hyperpigmented on large areas of my face. I'm trying to treat them with lactic acid... I hope it won't take forever to get rid of this horrible appearance-- I have big patches of reddish-brown discoloration all over the face!

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