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mary crabb

Scleroderma facial rash

5 posts in this topic

Hey! I'm new this this forum, and I'm not sure how it works. I saw where there had been some posts on scleroderma facial rash, but I couldn't read it. Can you please help me! I have dry, red, raised patches on my cheeks, eyebrow, upper lip, and nose. Nothing seems to help it. I've been treated for rosacea, and that did not help. Is there such a thing as scleroderma facial rash and if so, what do you do for it? It will progress to thick, hard plaques or what? Thanks for your help.


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Hi Mary,


Welcome to Sclero Forums!  I'm sorry you have a face rash.


As it happens, scleroderma would be the rarest possible cause of any face rash. I think you are likely referring to morphea scleroderma, which actually occurs in patches (not as a rash per se).  You can read about morphea and also look at the photos of it.


What I'd recommend -- and please bear in mind I'm not a doctor and have no medical training at all -- is that you go back to your dermatologist and ask for further investigation.  Things on the face are often difficult to identify because we usually don't want a skin biopsy taken on our face unless there is a suspicion of something serious like cancer.


Also make sure that you are seeing a board certified dermatologist and one who is interested in skin diseases.  The problem is that many dermatologists specialize in only certain things, such as skin cancer or plastic surgery. Take the time to read their biographies and select your dermatologist carefully.  If you are not satisfied, get a second opinion from another dermatologist.


Many of us here know what it is like to seem brushed off, at first, when doctors don't quite know what is wrong. So it takes persistence, sometimes returning again and again and pressing for answers.  Also be sure that you are following all their directions.  For example, sometimes people with rosacea need to use medication but also find and avoid all their triggers, such as spicy foods or alcohol, etc.


Keep in touch and let us know what you find out, okay?



Warm Hugs,


Shelley Ensz

Founder and President

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099


The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

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Thank you, Shelley. I'd still like to hear from anyone who does have Scleroderma rash or a rash like I have posted. At this point, I don't think it's Morphea...but, I could be wrong. My dermatologist is perplexed and he has done a superficial biopsy (not deep) and skin scrapings. Nothing showed up there. He'll probably do a deeper biopsy next time.

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Hi Mary,


Welcome to these forums!


I'm sorry to hear that you have a skin rash, which does sound most unpleasant. As Shelley has said, it is important to see a good dermatologist and as you have mentioned in your other post that you do have Linear Scleroderma, I've included a list of Scleroderma specialists, as we do recommend that, if possible, our members consult one. 


Thankfully, I've not suffered with this myself, but it's possible that some of our other members will be able to give you some more first hand advice.


Please do keep posting and let us know the results of your deeper skin biopsy, should your dermatologist decide to go ahead with it.


Kind regards,


Jo Frowde

ISN Assistant Webmaster

SD World Webmaster

ISN Sclero Forums Manager

ISN News Manager

ISN Hotline Support Specialist

ISN Chat Host

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Dear Mary,


My first thought after reading your post, is the facial rash from a medication  or one you are allergic to?


Are you taking corticosteroids?  I heard they can cause breakouts on the face regardless of age.  Are you on any other medications that can cause an allergic reaction?  I was on a medication once that filled my torso and entire back with a zillion red bumps.  See if you can trace your scaley patches to beginning any new meds.


I have diffuse scleroderma.  My face is now sensitive and I usually have what looks like a rash on my face (and yes I have very heavy make up for the rare times I go out into public).  In MY opinion my problems are caused by my youth.  My raised bumps might be from rosacea in combination with acne treatments along with extensive sun damage in my teenage years.  Now that my skin is "stretching", the treatment with steroids makes it more obvious.   I mostly hear of skin thickening and hardening.  In my case even though I am getting a scleroderma "face life" and sclerodactyly, it has also stretched out EVERY damaged pore on my face. One by one...  I also have keritanosis patches that started on my limbs and are now spreading to my hands and face, could that be it?  Last thought is hormones.  I have had a roller coaster of hormones over the last 15 years!


Please keep me updated.



Diffuse Scleroderma Diagnosed March 2009

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