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About a_sharpe1

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    Sharon, Tennessee
  1. Thank you, Nan. Now that I think about it, the definition of melanophages makes sense - it has to do with melanin. My regular dr felt one of my indurations (indentions) & he seemed to think it went through the muscle. Any chance of that happening, if panniculus is the fat layer? I really appreciate you taking the time to research this. It means a whole lot to me. Margaret, I'm with Barefut. What is your background? Definitely in the health care profession I would almost be willing to bet. Barefut, I'm also with you on how the path report seems to be in a foreign language. I'm glad someone else agrees with me in that respect. Thank you & Warm Hugs to You All!!
  2. Thank you so much, Margaret, for all your help!!
  3. Yes ma'am, it helps. Thank you! Doctors know this language but I think it should be standard for them to explain in layman (or laywoman - LOL...) terms. Do you know what the PANNICULUS is? What about MELANOPHAGES? Thanks Margaret.
  4. Just recently, I was able to get a copy of my initial path report from my biopsy. Is there anyone that could possibly help me interpret the findings in the 'English Language'? Much of it is foreign to me. Any help would be appreciated! See below: Microscopic Description: The entire dermis is fibrotic with a superficial and deep perivascular lymphohistiocytic infiltrate. In addition, there is thickening of the fibrous septa in the panniculus with aggregates of plasma cells at the edges. There are melanophages in the papillary dermis.
  5. Thank you Janey. I just don't know where to go for help. I suppose it's going to be a trial and error process, but I know I'll find help one way or another.
  6. Danielle, thank you for your words of encouragement. :D Mine started out witha single lesion on my left butt cheek. I thought it was a bruise that wouldn't go away but noticed that it felt rough; kind of like an actinic keratosis (which I have also had). Being that I have a family history of skin cancer, I rushed in to the dr. By the time I saw the first dermatologist it had grown from roughly the size of a nickel to just over 22mm. Within a few weeks, the second one appeared on my left hip. I now have them on my arms, left breast, legs & across the lumbar spinal region. Don't get me wrong - some are much worse than others. My husband can't see all of them, but they're noticable to me & once they become more visible, they start getting larger & deeper. The ones I have seem to go down through the muscle, which I suppose is where the pain comes from. Before new areas appear they tend to bruise and the area around the indentation seems to become swollen & nodules can be felt. You are absolutely right, this dr didn't give me the "time of day". He didn't even look at all the spots. From the research I've done on "anetoderma", those spots are marked by loss of elasticity (spelling??) & wrinkling. Not one of my spots have loose skin or wrinkling, but they are marked by deep depressions where there has been obvious loss of tissue. At times, I assume when the disease is in an inflammatory stage, each spot is surrounded by a blue "bruise-like" area. He told me that in morphea, the areas are typically brown. He just made me feel like I had no idea what was going on with my body at all - very uneasy. The one thing I've heard over and over is "Oh, Vanderbuilt - they're the best...". I have another opinion... but maybe I'm the one who's wrong.
  7. Thanks Snowbird. You're right... What do I have to lose - besides time, money and sanity?!? LOL... :P
  8. Hi all. As you all know, I was diagnosed by deep punch biopsy as having morphea a short while ago. After talking with many of you regarding my options, I asked my primary doctor to refer me on to a specialist, which he did. I had an appt yesterday with a Dermatologist (from Vanderbuilt) . I was left very frustrated and confused to say the least . He spent 5-10 minutes tops in the room with me & told me he suspected that my diagnosis should be anetoderma rather than morphea. He then proceeded to, matter of factly, tell me that there are no treatments for either disease. He said I could try an immunosuppressant but claimed that it was extremely expensive, insurance companies, on average, do not cover it, and he was most positive that it wouldn't help. He also said he's never had a patient that listed pain as a symptom and couldn't understand what would cause it. Has anyone had a similar experience? Should I get a second opinion or hang it up and learn to deal with it - much as he suggested? Any comments would greatly be appreciated!
  9. Smac, how did you keep your patience and sanity through those two years? Better yet, how did you keep from telling that doctor just exactly what you must have thought of him:angry:? How in the world can you have auto immune thyroid disease but no auto immune disorder:wacko:? Duh, I'm far from a doctor but can put two and two together. Hey, on a good day, I can even give you the correct answer of two and two. LOL... Wow, that had to be a very trying time for you. I'm sorry you had to go through so much to get a diagnosis. Thank goodness you've finally got the doctors you deserved to have all along ;) . Did it take two years for your labs to finally turn up positive for autoimmune? I think doctors rely too much on the lab work sometimes. After all, if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, why treat it like a dog? In my opinion the most frustrating aspect of beeing seen by doctors such as the rheumatologist you saw is that without his patients, how woulld they pay their bills? Yet so many of them have the audacity to treat a portion of their patients as if they have no idea what's going on. Please don't get me wrong ~ I'm sure there are by far many more 'good doctors' out there. Sometimes though, the hardest part is finding them . I'm with you when you say that you know your body and you know when something isn't right. I'm 33 and for the past 5+ years, I have dealt with arthritis that progresses a little bit more each year. Until these lesions began appearing, I had been diagnosed with several vague conditions and to be brutally honest, I have felt that more than one of my doctors has looked at me as if I was a complete hypochondriac. I knew all along that something was going on and that it was just a matter of time. You said before that your diagnosis is keloid scleroderma but that you have morphea plaques. I haven't read much on keloid scleroderma - is it classified as localized scleroderma like morphea is, or does it fall under systemic involvement?
  10. Hi. My name is Angie. I live in Tennessee and have recently been diagnosed with Morphea by a Dermatologist. It was diagnosed by way of punch biopsy. Since the diagnosis I have had NUMEROUS new patches appear including several in my lower spline area. I'm also having a LOT of arthritic pain, as well as stabbing, shooting pains in the areas of new patches. Does anyone else have these type symptoms? Any ideas on treatment that might bring the symptoms under control? Also, I know I need to get in to a doctor, but am unsure whether I need a Rheumatologist or Dermatologist. The Dermatologist I saw told me, in a nut shell, there's not much that can be done aside from high dose steroid creams which can be used for a month at a time only. No bloodwork has been run, but the Dermatologist did say my biopsy did not indicate "autoimmune". Has anyone heard of this? Everything I've read has been indicative of autoimmunity. I also have many symptoms of systemic involvement. Can a biopsy conclude whether it is localized or systemic? Any help you can offer is greatly appreciated. I'm sorry for such a long post. It's easy to let your mind get the best of you and with such little information out there, it makes it hard to know what's really going on. Thank you again. Talk to you soon. Angie
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