Scaly Red Facial Rash
February 28, 2007 12:40 AM   Subscribe

Since childhood, I have had a facial rash - scaly red bumps in my nasolabial folds and on my chin. It never seems to get any better or any worse, and it doesn't appear on any other part of my body. What is it?

I've consulted two dermatologists about it, and both said, "I don't know what that is," prescribed medications that didn't effect any change in my condition and sent me on my way. Before I see a third dermatologist, I'd like to find a name for the rash so I can find a doctor who is familiar with the condition and can treat it effectively.
posted by freshwater_pr0n to Health & Fitness (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
A picture might be in order - actually lots of pictures, high resolution, posted to medical discussion boards.
posted by By The Grace of God at 1:14 AM on February 28, 2007

My son had a rash for a while that sounds similar to yours. The pediatrician attributed it to extreme drooling while he slept - his face stayed wet and chafed. We put a sheepskin over his pillowcase to wick away moisture and his face has been fine ever since. Maybe worth a shot?
posted by Sweetie Darling at 3:02 AM on February 28, 2007

you might get better suggestions if you posted a picture and gave a more detailed history (is the rash present all of the time, is it itchy, does it ooze, what treatments specifically have you tried and for how long, etc). However, unless there is a really experienced dermatologist here, or someone else with the same condition, you are unlikely to get a diagnosis on ask metafilter if two dermatologists have already failed. I would suggest asking for a referral from your primary care provider for a very experienced dermatologist, or doing your own local search. If you live in an urban area, you may be able to get an appointment with a very experienced physician - though, unfortunately, as someone with a nonurgent concern, you are likely to wait a long time for the appointment.

I know it's frustrating to have a health issue and not have a name for it. Good luck.
posted by tuff at 4:19 AM on February 28, 2007

Have you tried topical steroids such as Cortizone? I occasionally get red flaky skin in the same areas you mention, and that stuff burns when applied but quickly clears it up.
posted by Meatbomb at 5:20 AM on February 28, 2007

i used to get something similar in the crooks of my elbows. they called it sweat blisters. i was able to reduce the problem by keeping the area a bit less sweaty.
posted by lester's sock puppet at 5:37 AM on February 28, 2007

I'm liking the drool answer. It reminds me of an episode of Roseanne where the boss can't figure out why his finger is chafed, and she's tells him it's because he keeps wiping his nose with it, and that DJ gets it all the time. I love Martin Mull!

Sometimes skin problems, at least mine, are caused by diet. I have learned so much from Dr. Perricone and his books that I seriously want to hug and kiss the man. He has solved acne and redness issues for me, for life. I tried every topical and oral medication there is and his food recommendations are my only savior.

The basic logic behind his theory is certain foods cause inflammation and the body reacts badly to it. Apparently, inflammation causes acne, aging, rosacea, and some studies say even cancer. The worst news is the main perpetrators are sugar and coffee.

Good luck!
posted by JJ Jenkins at 5:38 AM on February 28, 2007

Everything I've ever taken to a dermatologist, the first thing they ask me is what have tried on it, and how did that work out for you?
I'd find out what you've already tried on it, because the new guy will want to know.
posted by unrepentanthippie at 5:46 AM on February 28, 2007

Did the dermatologists consider/rule out keratosis pilaris?

My daughter has it on her cheeks and chin as well as her arms and legs. We use a couple of skin creams from this source which do an excellent job of keeping it to a minimum.
posted by briank at 5:59 AM on February 28, 2007

IANAD. But it could be perioral dermatitis. Some people find that switching their toothpaste (away from certain ingrediants like fluoride or sodium lauryl sulfate) helps.
posted by junkbox at 6:12 AM on February 28, 2007 [1 favorite]

I was in Whole Foods the other day and a mom was talking about her daughter who'd had a similar problem (red, itchy, scaly folds around her nose and mouth) for years, and it had seemingly cleared up when she switched to a sulfate-free toothpaste.
posted by barometer at 6:21 AM on February 28, 2007

Junkbox, bingo! That's exactly what my rash looks like. Thank you.
posted by freshwater_pr0n at 6:22 PM on February 28, 2007

« Older How can I promote my site in an interesting way...   |   Name this juvenile fiction book, please. Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.