Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Parkinson's and Skin Issues - Leprosy?

Dear Readers,

Did you know that it's very common to have skin issues with Parkinson's?   Yes, I know, it's typical anyway as we age.  But I can tell you I have noticed many more skin blemishes on my body in the past year since being diagnosed with PD.   In fact my family doctor had mentioned (when I had showed him a couple of moles) that I can plan on getting many more of them too, along with other skin issues.   I used to wear makeup to cover up all the skin things, but have finally decided this is "who I am" - take it or leave it.

A couple of days ago  I went to the beauty shop for my monthly trim, after my guardian angel of hair coloring (A special friend who colors my hair for me monthly) had applied hair coloring the day before.   My beautician noticed  a couple of areas of dry, sand-papery skin on my forehead.  (See picture with arrow in the middle of my forehead).  I know it doesn't show up very well on the picture, but it is very noticeable in person - looks like dirty skin that just won't scrub clean.  Or somewhat like a birth mark.  

My beautician had a name for the skin condition, and typical me, I can't remember what she called it.   But she did show me a product that she uses on her face as a moisturizer (she has severe rheumatoid arthritis) and also has skin problems.  She recommended Cocoon, which is full of Amino Acids.   Now it's too early to give a report on how it works because I just started using it a few nights ago.   I will keep you posted though.  But, already, after only 6 nights  my face does not feel so dry.     
It is pricey, but will be worth the price if it works.  None of my other moisturizers worked for this problem.  (No, I'm not being compensated for mentioning this product or the product mentioned below in any way!)

I meant to ask the doctor about something to use on my face, but forgot because I didn't have it written on my list.  But for now the Cocoon seems to be helping.

According to The Parkinson's Disease Treatment Book by J. Eric Ahlskog, M.D., what I have on my face probably is Seborrhea Dermatitis.  "The jury is still out as to what really causes skin problems with Parkinson's patients, but it is suspected that the various medications are the cause."   If i were to make a guess -  YES - IT'S THE DRUGS!!   What is that old saying - "Better Living Thru Modern Chemistry!"  

By the way, I saw my family doctor two weeks ago and showed him all my moles (just to be safe).   I'm happy to report none of them are cancerous.  That's another thing that has worsened since being diagnosed with Parkinson's.   The amount of moles on my skin has increased two-fold in 1 year, along with little bumps that look like warts.   

Overall my skin is extremely dry - to the point where it's very itchy.   I was talking to a friend on Twitter one day, and she suggested using "Palmers Cocoa Butter Formula, with Vitamin E."  Let me tell you - that stuff works magic.   I do have to apply it daily, and if I don't, I really pay for it big time with excessive itching.  Cocoa Butter is an old product as I remember my mother using it when I was a kid.  It's also Fragrance Free for anyone needing that feature.   I don't know why it didn't work on my face, but it didn't.  You can also pick it up at the local drug store.  

Now dry skin is typical in the winter if you live in a northern climate.   Our houses are dry with the heating unit running full force in the winter.  But my skin is dryer than it has ever been before, and this is the first year I've had the itching to go with it.   I also drink a lot of water, but that hasn't made a difference either this year.  The Palmers Cocoa Butter takes care of the itching for almost 24 hours.

Would you believe I even looked up  Leprosy on the internet to see what that looked like?   Horrible, don't even bother to look.   ha ha - at least I don't have that!

Thanks for visiting once again, I know this is a boring post - guess it's reflective of the mood I'm in these days.



  1. Good Morning Mary,
    I take meds for my kidney disease that cause my skin to be very dry also. Not my face, just mostly my arms and legs. I have never seen the products you mentioned but I will be on the lookout for them. Thank you.
    Hope this day is a good one for you.

  2. So glad you don't have leprosy! I wouldn't want to run and point screaming "unclean- unclean" LOL (that's what they did in the biblical days) I'm glad you got things checked out. My mother had a mole near her eye by her nose, it started growing and by the time she had it checked out the dr said it had to go and they had to do surgery. The darn thing grew all up in her eyelid. Keep up the good work. You are doing a great job staying on top of stuff :)

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  4. You're right about the meds. TW never had eczema until she started taking Atenolol. Unfortunately, that's one of the side effects. It gets worse every year. Her arms are all blotchy and her knees are like sandpaper. She doesn't like putting anything on her skin but has been using Origins Precipitation Extra or Eucerin when it becomes itchy. She'll have to check out the products you mentioned. She just looked up the products. The Palmers contains parabens, which are known carcinogens, and urea, which is made from—ready for this—cat urine. I'm not telling you to stop using it since it's working but just putting out a red flag.

  5. Definitely not boring! I have to go look up Cocoon now. Mom has extremely dry skin. It kind of goes along with living in a state that's practically desert. Nothing seems to work very well. Maybe this will.

  6. That is great information and not boring at all.
    I think a lot of us struggle with dry skin. I asked my dermatalogist at Mayo what to use too and he basically said that any of the beauty products offered at your local store are just as good as the really pricey stuff. I mean I see some of this stuff over $100 a bottle. Makes you wonder what's in it? Gold??


  7. I had no idea you were going thru the wringer with your skin. I knew about your back etc but not your face until we talked about it. Palmers has been out a LONG long time. For me, I will still be using it. xox

  8. I have always had dry skin and since getting old (haha) I have one solution for it. I have a small plastic oil of olay bottle in my shower filled with olive oil. After the shower and before I dry off, I rub a small amount of olive oil into my skin. It's perfect.

  9. Thanks for the haeds-up. I'll have to look for this stuff! My face gets so dry, then I break out. I always thought that only happened with oily skin...not so! I also thought I was past that when I left my teens...again, not so!
    Who knew?
    Oh, and if you want paraben free, I use Aveeno Baby. All natural and works really well!

  10. We have to apologize. We found Palmers in Walgreens and it didn't have parabels or urea. They must've reformulated it or the site was incorrect. We're very sorry we misinformed everyone. *hangs head*


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