Tuesday, March 4, 2014

And the Diagnosis Award Goes To Eczema

Saturday Jason declared a field trip to the local walk-in clinic. Rather than wine and dine me like a Saturday night should go, he took me to the medical clinic and we sat in the waiting room for an hour and a half with bad elevator music and flu-ridden people.

To give you a little back story, Jason doesn't get sick or injured. Hardly ever. He's like Superman. If he cuts a finger to the meat, it's nothing a little electrical tape can't fix. He once sliced his arm open and bandaged it with paper towels and Saran wrap. The next day he decided to go to the hospital and get thirteen stitches, only after seeing that it looked like a spoiled meat sandwich. He doesn't even have a regular physician.

Any ole' how, Jason's right lower leg and ankle have been in pretty bad shape for a while. They were swollen to the point it was obviously noticeable and so red it looked like he baked in the sun for days. It was painful and pepper spray itchy. And it oozed a clear liquid.

Being the nice wife I am, I nagged him into going to see the doctor. So off to the walk-in clinic we went. After looking at him for ten minutes, the doctor diagnosed chronic Stasis dermatitis, a form of eczema. I called bullshit.

Jason didn't have a clue how to pronounce eczema, let alone know it even existed. I'm no doctor and I don't play one on TV, but I've seen eczema before and it never looked like what Jason has. I was under the wrong assumption that eczema was small red splotches on the skin, not a huge red blotch the size of Texas. So I went for a second opinion and consulted on the Internet with Dr. Google.

Turns out (and don't tell anyone this) I was wrong! Jason does, indeed, have eczema. It's gross, it's itchy, it's ugly, and it will probably come back. But for now he has a temporary fix in the form of corticosteroid pills and cream.
This isn't Jason's foot. He wouldn't let me take a pic. He's not a team player. But this pic from the National Eczema Association is mighty similar to what his leg and ankle look like. Except Jason's is much, much redder.

Chances are the eczema came about due to a problem with his veins and circulation. Stasis Dermatitis tends to be chronic until the underlying cause is addressed. So, I'll continue nagging and spending Saturdays at the doctor with Jason so he can get the relief he needs.

On a side note, I also found out that I have a form of eczema. Dr. Google told me so. Mine is Dyshidrotic eczema, a condition in which small blisters develop on the hands and feet. I've been dealing with it for years and never knew. (Part of it is because I'm stubborn too and rarely go to the doctor either.) But now I know. And knowing is half the battle.

Do you know anyone who suffers from eczema? Do you have any tips or suggestions on what products to use or methods to take in order to minimize flare-ups?


Amy C said...

I have eczema. My mom has it pretty bad too. The best thing to help prevent it is to keep the skin moisturized. Aveeno lotion can help with the itching. Also try not to take hot showers which will dry out the skin. Good luck!

An Apel a Day said...

My sons both had it on their heads when they were babies. Both got it after being on antibiotics hard core. One had meningitis and the other had a staph infection. I thought it was cradle cap with Mica, and started scrubbing his poor little head. I made him bleed. :( Then after seeing the doctor for a follow-up he told me what it was. I read so many bad things about treating it with steriods. Just that it works only temporarily. It's also not good for kids. I gave him probiotics. After two weeks it got a lot better. After two months it was gone.

Some people that have it also get it from being allergic to gluten. It wouldn't surprise me if that was true for us. I have tons of allergies.