Was the dermatologist worth it? Hypopigment, red face/spidering

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1944
   Posted 8/29/2007 2:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Well, its been a few months now since I first went to the dermatologist to repigment/even out pigment and to also investigate my red face.  From my experience, I learned that:
1. Protopic is a very strong cream
2. protopic works ok on new vitiligo, does not even out hyperpigmentation, causes the edges to darken around vitiligo patches but often very little of the patch itself colors in or fades.
3. Does not seem to work on old vitiligo.
4. Does not seem to work on pigment changes that may indirectly be caused by endocrine stuff
5. My red face that is not raised, is not from roseacea, but AI disease
6. Roseacea cream did help some with my deep pore problems, at night taking the red from my face but by morning I was red as a beet.
7.  Might be preventing more spider nevi on my face?  Have no clue.
8.  Now I have made contact with a dermatologist to take care of the spider nevi when they get bad enough.
9.  On spots protopic helped, they came back when I stopped using it.
10. In some places, protopic seemed to make my vitiligo worse, at least at first.
So, I've made contact, and now I will have more supporting evidence for a diagnosis.  I don't know if I will bother to depigment so I match all over because I will likely have to apply the depig cream my whole life long.  The cream is a quinine based cream like plaquenil is quinine based pill, and I don't know how much quinine a person can safely have in their system.  Apparently, quinine is a very strong skin and hair depigmenter.  It may be appropriate for some very dark patches, like I have on the edges of my face and some other areas (hyperpigmentation) and I know the lightening creams work, so if you have the hyperpigmentation, that's definitely worth asking about.
Anyway, for anyone with pigment issues, here's my summary.  Not real hopeful, but I guess the protopic stuff works for some people's vitiligo. 
I still think going to the dermatologist was good, I tried my best and so did he and I'm more educated about what's going on with me. 
Love, Marji
--Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less in human beings of whom they know nothing.--Voltaire (1694-1778)
Ills--Sjogrens-Lupus-like AI Disease, Hashis, Vitiligo, spinal stenosis/fusion with plate, salivary/lymphectomies, Diabetes, NAFLD, COPD, RLS, neuropathy, trigonitis, hystero, diffuse brain atrophy
Meds--Plaquenil, Evoxac, Metformin, Synthroid, HCTZ, Estradiol patch, Prosed, Klonopin, Soma, Ultram, Vicodin, Restasis, Albuterol,steroid injections, Protopic & Triamcinolone Acetonide ointments

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1529
   Posted 8/29/2007 11:07 PM (GMT -6)   

From what you summed up, it sounds like you came out a winner even if your original goal to even out your skin tones wasn't reached. As you said, you learned a lot, you have a dermatologist to see who can evaluate any new rashes etc, and you know who to go to for the spider nevi when the time is right. All things considered, not a bad deal. I just wish the cream had given you better results.

xoxo emmie

SLE, limited scleroderma, Sjogrens, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, seizure disorder, Raynauds, Hashimoto's (or Autoimmune) Enchephalopathy

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 8/29/2007 11:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Marji,

I was just reading a book about skin issues and its always great to hear results first-hand. Sorry the cream didn't help much . . . but glad you have a good derm doc when you decide you need one.

In His Grip,
AlwaysRosie          "We can't control the waves, but we can learn to surf!"
Psalms 139
Co-Moderator Lupus Forum
UCTD (Undifferentiated Connective Tissue Disease), Hashimoto's
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