Friday, 18 May 2012

Lupus is Skin Deep

My lumpy, warty-looking rash is spreading.
Lots of people with lupus have skin problems.

Most of us feel sick if we've been out in the sun.

Lots of us get rashes of various sorts.  The rash that gave lupus its name is the butterfly rash (malar rash).  It is a rash across the nose and cheeks. (It was thought to look like a wolf-bite.)

I don't get that rash - the worst I get on my face is a slight pink or red tinge across my nose and cheeks that comes and goes fairly quickly.

What I have a history of getting is ugly lumps. As a child I used to get them when I went out in the sun.  So I stopped going out in the sun. (I had nosebleeds when I went out in the heat anyway, so staying out of the sun wasn't an issue for me.)

I still get it when I have a lupus flare - usually on the back of my shoulders, but this time it's spread to my legs as well - little bumps that look sort of like warts.

It could be worse. Some people have much more severe rashes (discoid rashes) that can be anywhere and can itch and be painful.

At the moment, it's late autumn and heading into winter here in Brisbane, which means my skin is drying out terribly as well. It splits easily and hurts. I'm down to using QV bath oil instead of soap for bathing.  I was given some beautiful shower gels for my birthday - and I have to wait for summer before my skin will be tough enough for me to use them.

I wear sunblock every day. I avoid sunlight wherever possible. As well as having problems of my own with sunlight - lupus medications leave me even more sun-sensitive. I've had a basal cell carcinoma removed from my face - and I don't get sunlight on my face any time I can avoid it.

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