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Things That Go "Bump" in My Brain

Updated: Jul 2, 2019

If you are anything like me, you are constantly being bombarded by things you find interesting or curious and which add to our knowledge of ourselves and the world. One example might be skin problems.

I thought I knew it all. Actually, my knowledge of skin was confined to pimples, skin cancer, rosacea, the exotic pityriasis rosea and chicken pox. In that, I guess I'm not exactly a mavin of skin, moles and such.

One of those I knew about, pityriasis rosea, bears a resemblance to secondary syphilis marks. Anyone who has it will surely cringe when they notice these red circles on their arms and legs and the telltale "herald or mother spot" on their trunk. It will go away, on its own, within six weeks or so without any treatment.

Anyone who's ever had a pimple and suffered through their adolescent years with more than just one or two, knows acne is no joke. Not properly treated, it can leave its marks for life and affect self-confidence. I can't recommend meds, but there is one a dermatologist can provide via prescription and it clears them up almost miraculously. It's also a great antibiotic but not to be used excessively. The first letter of the name of the med is "C." No more hints from me or I'll be accused of prescribing and I can't do that.

I had chicken pox as a child and so did everyone in my family. Now, of course, we're all in danger of getting shingles because the nasty chicken pox virus hides at the base of our spines and may or may not reactivate itself.

To vaccinate or not? There are two shingles vaccines and neither is very effective from what I've read, but the fear factor is there. Don't vaccinate and get it near your eye and blindness could result. One vaccine is a virus that is alive and the other's not. Just like the two (Salk and Sabin) polio vaccines they had.

Recently, I added to my knowledge of skin disorders via a friend of a friend. The woman, who lives in the Southern states, has a large space she rents out for parties of all sorts and does fairly well. After a children's party just days ago, she developed a rash that looked like chicken pox. It isn't.

The internist told her it is molluscum contagiosum and it's quite common in kids. The worst thing about it, or maybe it's not the worst, is that the virus can live on ANY surface so you don't need to touch a child to get it--they just have to have it. Think of all the places you'd have to disinfect to clean that virus up and you know the task in a rented space is inordinate. She has to bring in a cleaning crew to disinfect the whole place.

Sorry to have added to your litany of highly communicable skin viruses, but I thought I should pass it along. It's not bad, it will get better with some meds, but it can still be around your home, so prepare to do a major clean-up.

That's what was bumping today.

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