Day 74 of TSW – More Pictures

I’m less than a month away from entering triple digits of beating the terrible Topical Steroid Withdrawal!

On this past Monday, if I had any doubts about being in the second flare stage, all those doubts were erased.  My legs were so tight and burning that it hurt to bend, hurt to walk, hurt to have clothing touch them, and the same with elbow creases.  I had the “elephant skin” on my inner thighs as it was so dry.  The oozing was back and was making my clothes stick to me.  I had been thinking about signing up for an upcoming running race but on this day, all the activity I could do was gimp stiff-legged to the restroom and whine in pain to myself.

But, I was pretty optimistic with this flare, because after the last slow progressing flare, things got better and I had a day or two where I felt really great – tons of energy and barely thinking about my skin, so I knew that would be coming again one day.  And the more I go through the flare cycle, the closer I am to being healed!

Friday I had a small milestone, it was the first time in WEEKS that I went to work without a scarf or high-necked top on to hide my neck.  I did put concealer on it to help out a bit, but I realized that as long as someone wasn’t right up close, you could barely notice the fine flakes or the uneven color.  Of course, then on the way home I got stuck in a 90 minute traffic jam, so I started itching at my neck and undid a bit of that progress.  Oh well, I will get there!

Here are a couple pictures from the past week.

Evidence that the second flare was underway.  All previous progress with this area being clear was gone, but this time around it was more just red and not so itchy and scabby as before.

Evidence that the second flare was underway. All previous progress with this area being clear was gone, but this time around it was more just red and not so itchy and scabby as before.

Shoulder ripped up early April

It appears that an angry tiger climbed into my bed at night and attacked my shoulder. This was taken earlier this week – now the area is smoothing out and the scabs are mostly gone.

You ever wonder what your hands will look like when you're 80 years old?  Probably like these paws, just with liver spots.

You ever wonder what your hands will look like when you’re 80 years old? Probably like these dry, rough paws, just with liver spots.

Previous picture of my stomach rash.

Previous picture of my stomach rash.  This was taken in the early days of TSW.

Stomach is not so angry-looking!  It's now just discolored and dry.  I often find myself snaking my hand up under my shirt during work and itching it absentmindedly.  The line in the middle is my 'normal' colored skin.  Hmm, it looks like I tried to paint on some abs or something.

My stomach is not so angry-looking! It’s now just discolored and dry. I often find myself snaking my hand up under my shirt during work when no one is looking and itching it absentmindedly. The line right down the middle is my ‘normal’ colored skin.

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15 thoughts on “Day 74 of TSW – More Pictures

  1. Amanda says:

    Ugh, sorry you’re going through the second flare! I always feel like my hands looks like an 80 year-old woman’s as well.It’s the worst (well, eczema in general, IDK about TSW) when it affects your ability to move the ways your normally would. 😦 Keep your head up, girl!

    • Thanks girl! And hands are tough because they are subjected to so many things that we touch, or harsh soaps, etc. Maybe I need to be like our badass blog friend The Allergista and just start wearing gloves everywhere 🙂

  2. Jo T says:

    Hey there. You have these on the exact places i have mine! Cept i also have it quite rough onmy thighs. Only last week i developed the apparently classic red sleeve on both arms. Both the back of my hands are so dry rough and red and yeah like u said… like 80yr olds hands. And im only 29! Just a question, whenever i have a scratch frenzy a few days later the larhe area around the scratches get extremely dry and flakes for about a week. Is that the sane for you? These current cuts seem to take forever to heal.. gah!

    We will have beautiful skin again 🙂

    Jo x

    • YOU’RE the Mojo from the ITSAN forum!! Glad to “meet” you 🙂 (I’ve been locked out of the forum for quite some time as it prompts me for a password but I will be back in there eventually, Joey and Jonathan were trying to help). Oh I have it very rough on my thighs too, the worst parts are up by the groin so I didn’t take a picture of those, lol. I wake up each morning and just scratch the heck out of my inner thighs. The good news is that they are now just mainly dry and discolored like my stomach, not oozing or super red anymore (though I know I may regress). Yep, the exact same thing happens for me with a scratch frenzy, the area gets very dry and flakes! How far are you in to TSW and where did you originally use TS?

      • Jo T says:

        I am indeed Mojo lol! Sorry i do tend to post a lot. But thats because i fund a lot of help on the forum as i cant really talk about it to my friends & family. Sigh*

        Im only a couple months in and am currently going through the bone dry phrase. My two daily oil baths are the only thing keeping my spirits up. Sad eh? I was born with eczema… used topical steroids sparingly for around 15 yrs (est) with several months gaps inbetween. Until late 2011 when my skin entirely blew up out of nowhere. Doctors n derms told me to slather potent creams ALL OVER like moisturiser for months. I didnt listen but still did it only for a few days at a time. But i think due the large areas of application is was enough to be absorbed in huge amounts. I really hate this. Gets me down every single day.

        You obviously have a lot on and probably doesnt help your tsw… but u know what we will eventually come out of this with beautifil flawless skin. And we will make the most of that time :)))) I’m here if u wanna chat. Love n flawless skin . Jo xx

  3. Mie Ululani says:

    Your body’s rockin’!! You will keep turning new corners! ❤

  4. J says:

    I just got off a round of Prednisone and my eczema is spiraling into a crazy flare. What made you decide to stop using steroids?

    • Hi J, thanks for stopping by. Honestly a few months ago I had posted pics of my eczema as I was frustrated with it also spiraling out of control after trying EVERYTHING, and another blogger saw the pictures and said “this looks exactly like topical steroid addiction” and told me about the ITSAN forum. So I read everything I could get my hands on about topical steroid addiction and it all made sense and I immediately stopped using all steroids. Every time I used them, I would get a temporary healing but it would always come back worse anyway, so they were not doing me any good and I didn’t want to progress to stronger and stronger ones. I didn’t think I had topical steroid addiction at first but after my withdrawal started I can say with certainty that this is what was going on with my eczema always getting worse. Not sure if you have ever visited the ITSAN forum ( but I know a lot of people have had your experience with prednisone making things worse. Hope your flare starts to calm down and please come back and visit my blog anytime or email me ( if you want to chat further!

    • joey says:

      i had the same shit with prednisone

      • Gosh, prednisone is a b*tch, pardon my language. I’m glad that i never took it, and I feel for everyone that got put on it, seems it does some very bad stuff. every day through withdrawal is another day that this nasty drug is out of your system!

  5. the ability of the body to heal itself is unbelievable. glad some things are on the up!

    • Yeah! I’ve been feeling so darn good lately these past few days I can’t believe it. (I have to be careful not to overextend myself!)
      My skin still LOOKS red and bad in many places but I don’t think about it much as it barely itches right now. Such a nice feeling, I am savoring it in case I go thru another bad flare cycle.

  6. yes, enjoy the times when you feel good. in my third month, I got a few days of relief before the big one hit. I really took advantage of those days and looking bad, I am so glad that I did.

  7. Abby says:

    You’re so brave to share your photos! I hope it gets better – and I know it will!

    • Thanks Abby! I visited your site and saw YOUR photos as well – I think you are even braver because you weren’t afraid to hide your face 🙂 You’re looking beautiful now, hard to believe that you ever struggled with eczema!

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