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I Miss My Flakes. Really, I Do.
from Caroline K.

Hi Ed. Caroline here from South Africa. Just thought I'd give you some follow up on my methotrexate treatment.

My skin definitely improved on 20mg but didn't get any better than pale pink patches with fine flakes. Derm has since increased my MTX to 25mg and I am feeling really sick with awful headaches most of the time. He also started me on Dovonex twice daily during the week and Dovate twice daily over weekends. I am pleased to say that I am now almost totally in remission. I have no scaling at all and my patches are starting to fade into normal skin color. I am hoping that I can come off the MTX at the end of this month's supply.

But Ed, tell me.... AM I CRAZY???? I know this sounds sick, weird, demented, etc ... but I actually miss my flakes! My hands automatically go to the places that provided the best pickings without me even realizing it and I always seem to feel quite disappointed there is nothing there! Of course I am thrilled that I am in remission and the freedom that brings, but it's almost as though a part of me is missing now.

Anyway, I hope all is well with you... Take care, -Caroline K.


Background: Tomatoes are the Culprit 

Ed’s Response: Caroline, thanks for such an open observation on a feeling many of us have experienced but hesitated to share. In remission, some of us do experience a sort of postpartum blues, and for exactly the reason you mention. It became habit for us to pick at our lesions. For me this had a sedating effect. It’s driven more than one wife of mine crazy. Even when I went out of my way to make the piles of flakes on coffee and end tables neat and even artful. When my lesions were at their worst, I’d make a contest of going after the largest flake (rather like attempting to peel an apple in one spiraling shave—and I’ve peeled some whoppers).

I’m happy to report, though, that the condition is temporary. If you are like me, you will forget the picking habit after a few weeks and then, when you force yourself to reflect on it, you’ll hope you never get to do it again. (It’s not at all like cigarettes or good liquor, for which an unheeded appreciation may linger throughout one’s lifetime, and you remember the pleasure forever, and that abstinence is a form of denial.)

Keep us posted. I’m anxious to know if the nausea and headaches go away on 25 mgs weekly. That’s what I was hoping my derm would prescribe when 20 mgs stopped working for me (after 8 months). Instead, he switched me to cyclosporine which, at almost six weeks now, isn’t doing much for me. -Ed

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