My Steroid History

Childhood

I had childhood asthma, but never had an attack. I didnt even use inhalers! Actually part of the reason was that i cant inhale that fast and hard for the medication to work :X *weak*

So in my childhood ever since i started school around 7 years old, i had problems on my thighs, well because wearing skirts that are kinda short, they dont cover the chair on which i sit on and i get rashes as a result.

Soooo. I got my first few tubes of steroid from the pediatrician. I think it was elomet. I was told to apply sparingly and thinly. I think i applied alittle, not much. Cant really remember. Maybe my mum applied more for me. But it came and went, I learn to sit on clean places ~_~ and be more particular about cleanliness. It wasnt a problem for me.

Teens onwards!

So i moved on to secondary school when im 13. First 2 years was fine. Next 2 years when im 15/16 i begin to see more of eczema. It wasnt diagnosed yet as such until probably in sec 3 or 4. I always referred to my dry skin and red patchy areas as “sensitive skin” due to contact with dirty bedsheets/chairs etc.  I was referred to National Skin centre when things got alittle serious.  My experience there was something like this: i waited to see the doctor, after that spent afew quiet minutes in the room(doctor didnt really tell me any risk about it etcetcetc and it was a different doctor each time!), then waited in the reception, collected my steriods from the pharmacy and went home. So the doctor gave me some steroids cream (which didnt work wonders for me) and the doctor didnt really tell me any risk about it etcetcetc .

Then i went on to Junior College. I felt it was one of the times i felt the most stressed. I wasnt doing well in school, and my skin was terrible. I dont know if it was my skin that made me stressed or the other way round. At that time i would often itch much and scratch my legs raw and bleeding at night.. I missed some sleep too. Maybe thats why i didnt do well in school?

My relative then introduced me to a dermatologist she sees at Gleneagles. And that was the start of trouble i felt. The doctor, like all dermatologists, prescribed me lots of steroid creams.

First it was Desowen Cream (0.05% Corticosteroid) for the patches on my face. and a stronger one for my legs. The first time i applied Desowen on my face, i always thought it smells weird and stinks! But well , i saw some results.

So over the last 7 years? or so that i went to see her, i got these:

  • More Desowen creams for the face. I think i easily used about 10 tubes?
  • Efficort cream (afew tubes)
  • Betasone cream 0.1% for the hands/other areas (afew tubs of them. Maybe less than 10 but more than 6?)
  • Diprosone cream & ointments for legs (lots of them 10?)

In the early years i saw her, due to frequent bi-weekly visits, my condition actually improved (due to diligently applying and follow ups. I see increased hair growth on my arms but well, who cares if the skin is nice and strong then?)

and in the later years when i said why the eczema on my face keeps coming back, she gave me:

  • Protopic for my face (this is a hella expensive tube of cream! S$90 for a small tube was it? In the end i didnt use much of it and threw it away. Im glad i didnt apply it!)
  • Elidel for my face (so after i complained to her that it was expensive, she gave me this.  She said there isnt much substitute for protopic. Only this or that. I think i got 2 tubes, but i didnt use them much, not even half a tube)
  • Oral Prednisone (3 times if i recall, each course was 1 to 2 weeks tapered down. She asked if i wanted to try oral steriods, and then, being clueless about its effects, i said yes so readily.)

On the 3rd try, i was reluctant, becos i clearly felt the re-lapse that was so fierce and depressing. (but the results was amazing while it worked) But i took it anyway. At that time i knew, oral steroids were serious stuff with re-lapses and i need to taper off slowly. The fact that stopping abruptly could kill, kinda freaked me out alittle.

And most recently, i complained that the diprosone isnt healing much of my fingers thats always red. So she gave me afew tubes of

  • Beprosone ointment (Betamethasone 0.05%) I received 2 tubes but didnt use even half of it.

She was always saying im under-medicating. I guess thats good for me, looking back.

Some of my poison(Vaseline for comparison):

IMG_0429

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