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Is cystic acne on back caused by allergic reaction to a pollutant in sea?

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Practicing since : 2005
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Hello, I have had skin problems since i was 13, I had acne which has cleared up but I have such dreadful skin its making me miserable. My doctor said my skin looked dry. My doctor also said that she thinks my symptoms are stress/anxiety related but I'm not so sure even though I've been through a lot of stress to put it mildly. I've added pictures to show what my skin is like. Any help or advice would be good because it makes me so depressed. Its also worth noting that I have the same skin all over the top of my back as in the pictures then a rash similar but less dry on my legs, arms and chest. One interesting thing that may or may not be of relevance - I was on holiday in the Costa XXXXXXX before this I only suffered from acne on my face. I went for a swim in the sea and the next morning I had the (I'm not exaggerating) worst cystic acne from top to bottom on my back. I thought I could possibly of had a allergic reaction to a pollutant in the sea? maybe It is just coincidence. What I've done to try and treat my skin - I cut out dairy for 1month. I had a gluten sensitivity test which came back negative. I had a TSH test for thyroid which came back negative. (Although maybe I need free T3/T4 test?) I have no iron deficiency I would note my sleep is pretty bad, lately I've had partial insomnia sleeping 2hours at a time. On the other end I would sometimes sleep for 10-14hours but my skin wasn't any better then. I've had M.E/CFS symptoms since my acne started when i was 13. I have a slight suspicion that my hormones are out of balance, or a gut issue. I've recently started taking the following supplements to see if they help - Vitamin D Pro biotic XXXXXXX Naturally Tri-Iodine 12.5 mg (I took it for 1 week but I read that you have to be careful with iodine supplementation so I stopped for now) I am also currently trying to up my calories above 2000-2500 as for along time I've eaten a small breakfast with 1 big meal a day which would be about 1000-1400 calories per day. I am 183 lbs 5'11 male. I didn't seem to lose any weight on such a calorie deficit. Thanks If you have any additional questions I will answer anything.
Posted Sat, 14 Dec 2013 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 52 minutes later
Brief Answer: More info needed Detailed Answer: Hi, Thanks for writing in. Ive gone through the images uploaded and the detailed history given by you. I really appreciate the details you have given. After going through images I feel that you have Grade 4 acne with scarring. The cysts over the back are also due to acne.Also you have an atopic tendency,which means that your skin is of sensitive type.Such skin is prone to allergic reaction to many allergens. Also I would like to know- Do you feel your skin is oily or dry type? Is there any itching? Have you taken the drug ISOTRETINOIN for acne? Are you applying any creams/cosmetics presently? Answer the above questions to help you better. In my clinic patients like you are benefited by using soap free cleanser, good quality moisturizer, sun protection creams, few procedures like chemical peels and dermabrasion etc. Answer the questions and we can continue the discussion here. Regards DrSudarshan MD Dermatology
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Is cystic acne on back caused by allergic reaction to a pollutant in sea? 1 hour later
Hello thank you for the reply. My doctor said my skin appeared very dry. There isn't any itching. I haven't taken any drug, the dermatologist offered me accutane but I refused. I've recently been applying 'Dermol 500' it says 'an antimicrobial emollient and moisturiser for the management of dry and pruritic (itchy skin conditions, espically eczema and dermatitis' I was skeptical that this would actually do anything for me, but I am trying it anyway.
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 13 hours later
Brief Answer: Moisturizer and soap free cleanser use. Detailed Answer: Hi again, Thanks for details. As said previously you have got acne prone skin along with atopic tendency. You should use a soap free cleanser for face and body wash along with good moisturizer.A cetaphil cleansing lotion along with cetaphil moisturizing cream would be beneficial .Oatmeal bath can also be useful.Sun protection during daytime and avoiding very hot or cold water for bathing would be advisable. A visit to your dermatologist for few office procedures would be helpful. Hope this helps. Regards. DrSudarshan
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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