Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Yet another thing to live with around this zoo

As if we didn't have enough to worry about around here, apparently Isaac has psoriasis.

Yeah, you know, the heartbreak?

According to MayoClinic dot com:

Psoriasis is a common skin disease that affects the life cycle of skin cells. Normally, new cells take about a month to move from the lowest skin layer where they're produced, to the outermost layer where they die and flake off. With psoriasis, the entire life cycle takes only days. As a result, cells build up rapidly, forming thick silvery scales and itchy, dry, red patches that are sometimes painful.

Psoriasis is a persistent, long-lasting (chronic) disease. You may have periods when your psoriasis symptoms improve or go into remission alternating with times your psoriasis becomes worse.

For some people, psoriasis is just a nuisance. For others, it's disabling, especially when associated with arthritis. No cure exists, but psoriasis treatments may offer significant relief. And self-care measures, such as using a nonprescription cortisone cream and exposing your skin to small amounts of ultraviolet light, can improve your psoriasis symptoms.

He first exhibited symptoms right around the first of the school year. We thought it was poison ivy contracted at church camp and treated him with some calamine and anti-itch cream. It didn't go away, so then we thought it was scabies and treated him with lindane. It didn't help, either. We finally broke down at that point and went to a dermatologist, who diagnosed psoriasis and gave him some serious strong steroid cream which eliminated the thick, scaly rash on his arms.

Now it's popping up on his face and neck. He isn't supposed to use the super-strong steroid cream on his face. I smeared some OTC cortisone cream on his head and sent him to bed.


It never ends.

Yeah, I've done my reading. I always do my research whenever someone around here is diagnosed with something new. It's probably exacerbated by stress and the fact that it's winter and it's cold and dry. So, what, we give him Prozac and an electric blanket and we're good to go?

I am thankful for one thing -- he doesn't seem to be bothered in the least by the appearance of the psoriatic lesions on his face. That's one kind of stress he doesn't need.

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