Skin infections

Posted by paulinef @paulinef, Jul 10, 2017

I recently had a fall and mildly, or so I thought, scraped my knee. I am currently on 10mg day of Prednisone for PMR and the scrape
became infected so have just finished a course of antibiotics (cephalexin) which cleared it. Now I have another scrape that appears to be infected so wondering if others on prednisone have experienced this and if antibiotics are the only recourse..

@charlena

Does anybody else in this group ever feel like doctors give the PMR diagnosis because it’s easier than looking deeper into your symptoms?

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Hi @charlena, I think it takes an experienced rheumatologist to actually diagnose PMR (my non-medical training opinion). When I had my first occurance of PMR I let it go for too long and was barely able to walk. My wife had to drive me to my doctor appointment. The doctor setup an appointment with the rheumatologist who actually diagnosed the PMR and put me on 20 mg prednisone with a taper off schedule after a few months. Took me three years to get off of the prednisone.

My second occurance I had to tell my primary care doctor I thought it was PMR not carpal tunnel when I started having arm and hand pain come back. I was wrong…I found out after meeting with the hand doctor at the clinic I have carpal tunnel in both hands, as well as my PMR is back. After reviewing my medical history/diagnosis for PMR she put me on prednisone and as part of her exam, she brought in some interns and did a show and tell on PMR and carpal tunnel. So, I’m guessing a lot of doctors just plain don’t have the “elderly health issues” experience. (NOT saying you are elderly! PMR just likes us more normally).

Happy Friday! Hoping for a PMR pain free day for all of you.

John

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@barbararene

Thought I would share that I went from 3 mg of prednisone to 2 1/2 mg. I can’t believe the difference. My shoulders hurt, bottoms of my feet hurt, ache all over. So frustrating. I was determined after my Dr visit when she said, well you will probably be on prednisone the rest of your life bc now your body doesn’t know how to function wo it. I do not like hearing that. I’m not sure if the pain and discomfort is from PMR or the withdrawals from the prednisone.
Barbara

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i could be so very wrong but i think the meds that are given to help our rheumatoid and psoriatic diseases are good but not specific for our diseases. hopefully they are still trying to work out different meds that will truly work. i think the prednisone will work for other problems but we need another medication that is specific for rheumatoid and psoriatic. (whatever meds that are out now do not seem to do what is needed and the side affects are not acceptable. keep dancing with a smile.

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@charlena

Does anybody else in this group ever feel like doctors give the PMR diagnosis because it’s easier than looking deeper into your symptoms?

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absolutely. i think the practicing mds are not in the research specific areas and mostly go by what is taught. and by the way, has the medical field changed enough with educating the doctors? this is not meant to demean in any way. why can’t we develop SPECIFIC blood tests for diagnosing as an example? i am sure there are other patients that have many good ideas in this area and not just me. i am referring to rheumatologists as well

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@charlena

Does anybody else in this group ever feel like doctors give the PMR diagnosis because it’s easier than looking deeper into your symptoms?

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i think when your immune system identifies threats and not just medically but EMOTIONALLY AND MENTALLY, your body responds to activate a protective mode and thus brings on the overreactions such as the swelling, pain and etcs. so, perhaps diagnosis such as PTSD, and other related EMOTIONS that are happening to the body on a fairly constant level can contribute to the immune system reactions. i really, really would like feedback on this please.

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@charlena

Does anybody else in this group ever feel like doctors give the PMR diagnosis because it’s easier than looking deeper into your symptoms?

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it sounds like you have just started to “do the dance” with trying to properly diagnose your medical problems. you must have patience and continue to believe in yourself. there are many doctors with many different personalities. they would be this way even if they were not doctors. we are here, and with you. keep writing.

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@charlena

Does anybody else in this group ever feel like doctors give the PMR diagnosis because it’s easier than looking deeper into your symptoms?

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Absolutely – I am sure that my body responded violently to a period of severe stress that I went through just prior to being diagnosed with PMR. I asked my doctor about that probability but she didn’t think it had anything to do with it, but I’m not so sure. Since then I have been very careful not to get too emotional and overactive about issues, and so far so good.

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John, the reason I asked that question is that my husband went through 4 Rheumatologists of which none of them diagnosed PMR. In fact, none of them diagnosed my husband with anything. The 5th Rheumatologist (the one he currently sees) diagnosed him on the first visit. The main reason I am concerned is that my husband’s mother had some type of muscle disease which we do not know what it was. We have mentioned this to all the Rheumatologists he saw and none of the first four seemed interested in diagnosing him period. His current doctor seemed really anxious to diagnose him with PMR (an easy way not to have to delve or look further into symptoms perhaps). The prednisone does help him, he is on 5 mg. qd, which is not a lot. I guess the only way we will be able to find out what his mother had is to petition the court and obtain her medical records. I am so happy Mayo provides this and so many other forums. I enjoy being a part of them and enjoy all the feedback. Thanks to all who contribute!!

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@charlena

John, the reason I asked that question is that my husband went through 4 Rheumatologists of which none of them diagnosed PMR. In fact, none of them diagnosed my husband with anything. The 5th Rheumatologist (the one he currently sees) diagnosed him on the first visit. The main reason I am concerned is that my husband’s mother had some type of muscle disease which we do not know what it was. We have mentioned this to all the Rheumatologists he saw and none of the first four seemed interested in diagnosing him period. His current doctor seemed really anxious to diagnose him with PMR (an easy way not to have to delve or look further into symptoms perhaps). The prednisone does help him, he is on 5 mg. qd, which is not a lot. I guess the only way we will be able to find out what his mother had is to petition the court and obtain her medical records. I am so happy Mayo provides this and so many other forums. I enjoy being a part of them and enjoy all the feedback. Thanks to all who contribute!!

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I’m not sure if it’s an option for your husband but Mayo Clinic is really good at diagnosing hard to diagnose health issues. They use a team approach and have a lot of specialists and testing to get to the bottom of your health issue. If you would like to seek help from Mayo Clinic, please call one of our appointment offices. The contact information for Minnesota, Arizona and Florida can be found here:

http://mayocl.in/1mtmR63

This video might be helpful to you – What happens when you have a disease doctors can’t diagnose TED talk by TED Fellow Jennifer Brea who became progressively ill with myalgic encephalomyelitis, commonly known as chronic fatigue syndrome:

https://www.ted.com/talks/jen_brea_what_happens_when_you_have_a_disease_doctors_can_t_diagnose?utm_source=tedcomshare&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=tedspread

John

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@barbararene

Thought I would share that I went from 3 mg of prednisone to 2 1/2 mg. I can’t believe the difference. My shoulders hurt, bottoms of my feet hurt, ache all over. So frustrating. I was determined after my Dr visit when she said, well you will probably be on prednisone the rest of your life bc now your body doesn’t know how to function wo it. I do not like hearing that. I’m not sure if the pain and discomfort is from PMR or the withdrawals from the prednisone.
Barbara

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@barbararene, Hi, Barbara. I was on prednisone for another reason – 5mg daily for 8 years. I never had any joint pain before, but when tapering under doctor supervision, I developed awful nagging pain that I had never before experienced. It took 3-4 weeks for my body to readjust to the tapered dose of prednisone and for that pain to go away.
Rosemary

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@charlena

John, the reason I asked that question is that my husband went through 4 Rheumatologists of which none of them diagnosed PMR. In fact, none of them diagnosed my husband with anything. The 5th Rheumatologist (the one he currently sees) diagnosed him on the first visit. The main reason I am concerned is that my husband’s mother had some type of muscle disease which we do not know what it was. We have mentioned this to all the Rheumatologists he saw and none of the first four seemed interested in diagnosing him period. His current doctor seemed really anxious to diagnose him with PMR (an easy way not to have to delve or look further into symptoms perhaps). The prednisone does help him, he is on 5 mg. qd, which is not a lot. I guess the only way we will be able to find out what his mother had is to petition the court and obtain her medical records. I am so happy Mayo provides this and so many other forums. I enjoy being a part of them and enjoy all the feedback. Thanks to all who contribute!!

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My husband has doctors at both Emory and Vanderbilt, who also use a team approach, and we are happy with the results. The doctors at Emory saved his life several years ago. We only use “local” doctors for primary care, but that, too, is about to be “supplemented” with a primary care doctor from Emory. My husband’s CPK level is never in the normal range, although it’s not extremely high. The rheumatologist is never concerned, but his dermatologist IS concerned about it. In fact, the dermatologist was the doctor that said to him, “I’m afraid there is an underlying muscle disease that is going to rear its ugly head”, and referred him to his current rheumatologist. He had an MRI or CT scan and rheumatologist advised nothing out of the ordinary was seen. This, I feel, was the reason for the PMR diagnosis…….

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@charlena

John, the reason I asked that question is that my husband went through 4 Rheumatologists of which none of them diagnosed PMR. In fact, none of them diagnosed my husband with anything. The 5th Rheumatologist (the one he currently sees) diagnosed him on the first visit. The main reason I am concerned is that my husband’s mother had some type of muscle disease which we do not know what it was. We have mentioned this to all the Rheumatologists he saw and none of the first four seemed interested in diagnosing him period. His current doctor seemed really anxious to diagnose him with PMR (an easy way not to have to delve or look further into symptoms perhaps). The prednisone does help him, he is on 5 mg. qd, which is not a lot. I guess the only way we will be able to find out what his mother had is to petition the court and obtain her medical records. I am so happy Mayo provides this and so many other forums. I enjoy being a part of them and enjoy all the feedback. Thanks to all who contribute!!

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It sounds like your husband has a good doctor team and it’s good that he will also get some extra help when the primary care doctor from Emory joins the local doctor staffing. I’m sure that will bring some continuity of care from Emory into the local primary health care. It’s kind of puzzling that the rheumatologist is never concerned and the dermatologist is concerned. It would be nice if you could get them to talk to each other about why the dermatologist is concerned. Thank you for sharing the story. I’m hoping they are able to get to the bottom of it if it’s not just PMR.

John

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Wanted to let you know that this morning I took 1mg of prednisone. I have never been able to get under 2mg so we will see. I made this decision bc I noticed several,(what it appears to be), fat pockets at the base of my neck. I went to see a PA,(my rheumatoid Dr, I can’t get in to see that quickly), anyway, he said it appeared to be fatty pockets and wants me to go get a sonagram. I was a little worried. I never got the moonface, but did some research and this appears to be a side effect of the prednisone. Have any of ya’ll noticed any fatty pockets around the neck area?
Well after researching, and finding that others taking prednisone have experienced this, I am going to cancel the sonagram, bc I am convinced w the research that they are fatty pockets and will go away once I’m off of the prednisone. I may have to take more pain (tramadol medication to manage, but after this has happened I am more determined than ever to get off of this prednisone. I’m not saying I will be successful, but I am going to try it.
I have added some of the best, (meaning expensive), omega complex fish oil to my diet. I saw it advertised and researched it. They say that you have to take the right fish oil supplement. This one is from the fish in the waters of New Zealand and I ordered it online. Anyway, I don’t know if this is useful info for any of you, but I’m thinking after 1 wk, it is helping, (or it’s all in my mind).
I hope you all have a good day. Your feedback and sharing is always welcome.
Barbara Rene’

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@barbararene

Wanted to let you know that this morning I took 1mg of prednisone. I have never been able to get under 2mg so we will see. I made this decision bc I noticed several,(what it appears to be), fat pockets at the base of my neck. I went to see a PA,(my rheumatoid Dr, I can’t get in to see that quickly), anyway, he said it appeared to be fatty pockets and wants me to go get a sonagram. I was a little worried. I never got the moonface, but did some research and this appears to be a side effect of the prednisone. Have any of ya’ll noticed any fatty pockets around the neck area?
Well after researching, and finding that others taking prednisone have experienced this, I am going to cancel the sonagram, bc I am convinced w the research that they are fatty pockets and will go away once I’m off of the prednisone. I may have to take more pain (tramadol medication to manage, but after this has happened I am more determined than ever to get off of this prednisone. I’m not saying I will be successful, but I am going to try it.
I have added some of the best, (meaning expensive), omega complex fish oil to my diet. I saw it advertised and researched it. They say that you have to take the right fish oil supplement. This one is from the fish in the waters of New Zealand and I ordered it online. Anyway, I don’t know if this is useful info for any of you, but I’m thinking after 1 wk, it is helping, (or it’s all in my mind).
I hope you all have a good day. Your feedback and sharing is always welcome.
Barbara Rene’

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Hello Barbara Rene’ (@barbararene) – I’ve heard of moonface being one of the side effects of being on prednisone. I was on prednisone for 3 years starting at 20 mg dosage for my polymyalgia rheumatica and was finally able to taper off in 2010. Unfortunately my PMR flared up again last year in August and I started back on 20 mg dose. I’m currently at 6 mg and trying to go down 1 mg a month but I’ve been going back and forth between 5 mg’s and 6 mg’s so it’s great to hear are almost off of it. You may want to try going down at 1/2 mg at a time instead of one to see if that helps.

Omega 3 and 6 are pretty important in cellular health and I’m not able to eat fish but I can take fish oil. For the omega 3, I found a really good quality fish oil that actually has a slight lemon flavor that works for me Carlson Liquid Fish Oil. I take 2 tsp in the morning and 2 tsp in the evening. I also take 1-1/2 oz of Manitoba Harvest Organic Hemp Oil which contains omega 3 and omega 6.

Good luck on tapering off of the prednisone. Just keep at it!

John

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Thanks John. I hope you can return to no prednisone soon, just like we all do. Such a great drug, just wish it didn’t have those nasty side effects.

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@barbararene

Thanks John. I hope you can return to no prednisone soon, just like we all do. Such a great drug, just wish it didn’t have those nasty side effects.

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One funny story I can share with you – I’m 74 and my wife is 73. Besides being much better looking than I am and in better health, she looks a lot younger than me. I used to laugh when I saw her doing exaggerated vowel facial exercises when she was in her 30s. I don’t know if it made any difference for her because she hasn’t done them in many years as far as I know but it does sound reasonable that if you can exercise the muscles in the face it will help. I did a quick search and found a site with a video on the facial exercises – it will give you a good laugh if nothing else:

http://www.slate.com/articles/life/fitness/2011/01/cheeks_of_steel.html

John

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