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First of all, this condition is NOT MRSA or any other form of staph infection. I have been tested multiple times.

Having a recurring condition that your family practice doctor cannot diagnose is really frustrating.

This recurring infection that starts out looking like acne when the first bump appears, but its itchy. The area around the bump swells and reddens slightly and becomes tender and more whells like the first show up and join together til the infection covers a significant portion of my face. Then, after I finally get antibiotics in my system, I'm left with scars. It travels around my face each time it occurs, starting where the scar from the last occurrence ended. The slightest bump of the area will cause it to spread more until treated.

It only happens when my immune system is already compromised, whether it be from another infection in my body, or stress.

The thing that interests me about my condition is that its not physically contagious. I first thought I had contracted it from a tanning bed, but its not contact contagious, cus I've kissed and slept with someone while its been flared up before and it was fine (its been about 2 years since it first started).

My doctor said he'd "never seen or heard of anything like it". All he said he could do for me was have a bottle of antibiotics waiting for me at walmart for the next time it springs up. I want a solution, not something to hold me over. I'm currently waiting for my doctor to call me back with a referral.

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Hi! OMG...I have been dealing with the same exact thing it seems, almost 4 years now. 

I originally thought it was a spider bite the first time it happened, but it got progressively worse with an intense itching/stinging/burning. It was on my should blade. At that point it had grown from a pimple-looking/bite-looking bump into a patch about 2 inches with like a bubbly-blisterly patch in the center. i then used, i think, cortizone, thinking it would ease the itching/burning; the next morning i woke up and it had turned into 6inch patch and turned black, scabbed over and went away in about a month, leaving a scar that was lighter-skinned in the middle and dark around the edges. All this happened in the summer of 2007. 

The next summer, same thing, basically same place, only this time i didn't use cortizone...took about 2-3 weeks to heal. Following year, same thing, basically same place...seems to be overlapping around edge from where it had been previously, same time to heal. Actually, I got it twice last year, during the summer and winter. Now, I have it again. Swollen glands under my arm also accompany it every time it occurs. My whole shoulder blade hurts, pain down my arm. It is swollen around the blistery patch, right now its about 3"x3", blister about 1"x1".  

I thought many things as to where I could have picked this up or what it is. One of my thoughts was the tanning bed as well. My friend is a RN/Clinical Mgr, she thought it might be 'Tinea versicolor', something she had gotten after swimming in Florida from a yeast/bacteria that lives in red tide. After looking at pictures and much reading up on it, I do not believe it is that. 

The other thing I have noticed, but I can't say if its related or not, is that in-between 'outbreaks', I have large bruises that look like they are under the skin, kind of like small, reddish-purple dots clustered together in a pattern, no bumps/raised, but they look like bruises on my back usually between my shoulder blades. Idk, but its awfully frustrating! You are the first person I've come across (and I've been doing a LOT of 'Googling') to describe what I think is similar to me! Please let me know if you find out anything about what it is you have been experiencing. My doctor has no clue either!
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Also, I forgot, but, it's not contagious on my end either. My boyfriend of 3 years has literally felt it and we sleep together and he has never gotten anything. And it also seems like its more related to sun exposure for me...but I can't say that for sure b/c I did get it last winter and hadn't used the tanning bed all season. I rarely get sick so I can't even say it happens when my immune system is compromised, but I haven't considered stress, which is absolutely a factor for me. However, I am constantly tired, weak and have joint pain & swelling, and am wondering if this is something you have experienced. 
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Ok, I couldn't take it anymore & went to the ER today. Doc says I have shingles! I had looked it up before but certainly didn't think that's what it was, but after leaving the hospital I had an ephipany & realized I had similar outbreaks years before I had this one. The very first one showed up on my face, right side. That was 10 or more years ago, but in that same spot I've had the same rash about 4 more times since. This one now on my shoulder blade is also on the right side of my body & apparently shingles only appears on one side of the body! It also is brought on by a compromised immune system! ...and/or stress. You need to have had chicken pox in order to get shingles, so if you have had them it might be a good idea to discuss with your doctor.   ***this post is edited by moderator *** *** web addresses not allowed***  Good luck!
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Hi,

my friend has a very similar case to this except hers occurs on her limbs. you might want to check Prurigo nodularis. the symptoms seem very similar. Hope it helps.
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Currently undergoing something similar. About 8 months ago, a bump appeared on the knuckle closest to my nails on my right middle finger. It took a few days to further inflame and burst, it crusted over. It was more painful than irritating. My doctor told me to put antibiotic cream on itto help it heal. It did help the healing because the cream could pass through the epidermis from the break in my skin. The only problem was it could not fully heal due to the fact that it was located on a constantly moving joint. Two months of scabbing go on, and I almost haf it completely taken care of. One day at work while dressing a mannequin I pierced the scabe with a pin. The next morning I woke up with a red line streaking up my arm to my lymph node. I immediately qent to the ER, they looked at my arm, decided I had cellulitis. I was prescribed bactrim and given a brace so I couldnt bend the finger. They never took any cultures. Within about a week I was completely healed and went on about my life. 6 days ago I woke up and was getting ready for and noticed the same spot was red and irritated, mostly itchy. The next morning the spot had enlarged and was more itchy, and I had a red line traveling up my arm...already. I went to urgent care, when I told the doctor that this was recurrent and started in the same location he was stumped. Took no cultures and sent me on my way with a prescription for bactrim. I made a followup appt with my doctor for the following day. I woke up the following morning after 3 doses of bactrim and my condition had worsened. My doctor is currently just as confused. She is upset I was given a prescription for antibiotics without cultures being taken. The nurse took a scapel to my finger to acquire 2 cultures, one for viral and one for bacteria. I was given a regimine of 3 1gm tablets of valtrex and 3 300mg capsules of clindamycin daily. The new medicine has me almost 100% normal other than the twisted stomach and constant taste of antibiotics. I have another appointment with my doctor in two days, hopefully the bactrim didnt compromise the culture diagnostics. I'd like it if this never happened again. Can't drink, the meds interfere with my birth control and all of this is draining my pocket.
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