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IBS and sensitive skin/rosacea?

Does anyone have any knowledge of a link between skin sensitivities and/or rosacea and IBS? I am suddenly struggling with a really sore face and I seem to remember reading something about digestive issues and skin problems. Or is it because as soon as the IBS flares up, the anxiety it causes affects everything else!!

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I have both IBS and rosacea, and I can't say I've ever noticed or read about a link, but that doesn't mean there isn't one!! To be honest, when my IBS flares up I'm so concerned with getting that under control that I don't really notice whether the rosacea has got worse too!!!! If you come up with something, let me know!!! :D

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Yes, I have rosacea, too. I'm not sure whether there is a link, but my rosacea flares up when I'm feeling ill or tired and this includes when my IBS is bad too. So, I don't know if there is a definite link between the two, but I'm sure that my skin is affected if I'm feeling unwell. I also get migraine auras and these, too, seem to be more often when my IBS is flaring. I think it's just that the digestive system affects everything else - if that makes sense.

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Funny you should mention that but I have had awful itching/burning for ages, better since cutting out lactose. GP tries to fob me off with dry skin, bath oil, washing powder probs but am sure it comes from inside, can flare up anywhere even eyebrows then after 10 mins stops. Also have infected finger nails diagnosed but won't respond to medication. Am certain its all connected somewhere.

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Hi

I do not have rosacea but I do have psoriasis - a mild form thankfully. What I do know is that there is a direct correlation with inflammation and psoriasis which is a skin condition. When inflammation is present in the body this does directly affect organs of the body and in particular skin. I for many years have been careful with my diet which does help including ibs.

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I too have a mild form of psoriasis as well as IBS – in the past, I have been advised to eat spicy foods to help improve this skin condition, however, because I have IBS I have also been advised against eating spicy foods! Catch 22?!! :/

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Hi, You're not alone, I have had this kind of skin problem for a long time and, like my IBS, it will surface during stressful periods. There is apparently a theory that rosacea is linked to digestive problems and particularly bacterial overgrowth. Nothing's been definitively proved, though, but I know that the two problems often do appear together.

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Good grief, I'm not alone then - I started with rosacea 12 years ago and I put it down to hormones when I was 42. I stuck the 3 month course of antibiotics for a week, and then decided the side effects were too awful. I found a company called the Sher System who never advertised but sold skin products for various skin problems. It was utterly brilliant and I managed it for 10 years with their products. They closed a couple of years ago, and I manage with the minimum on my face. Then a month ago, I suffered a skin flare up and having read that rosacea type conditions are caused by inflammation, it seems to fit with something else I read about IBS and low level gut inflammation which does not show up on colonoscopy. Very frustrating because the dermo's first line of attack always seems to be antibiotics - which are not at all what we need!

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Have you found any alternatives for the sher system products, in particular their makeup?

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Hi, after Sher closed I went through a bad patch with my face and ended up seeing a lovely dermo who was highly recommended by friends. She looked at the sher products and couldn't explain why they worked because half the ingredients in them were irritants. But she accepted they suited me. She told me the least irritating moisturizer was Aveeno as it is oatmeal based - fruit and flower extracts are apparently very astringent and she told me to avoid them. I used Aveeno ever since, and it's been fine. After many expensive experiments, I finally found YSL Teinte Resist oil free foundation (not sure of spelling!) and I love it because I can't feel it on, and I can put it on more or less depending on what my face is doing that day! I have recently had a flare up and so went back to see my dermo who told me not to use anything at all except the Aveeno and the foundation (she has no problem with women wanting to wear make up - unlike some male dr's who seem to think it's simple - just leave the make up off) - no toner, make up remover etc. She told me to remove the foundation by wetting my hands and putting a blob of Aveeno in them - rubbing it gently on my face and splashing it off - no cotton wool as this is apparently like sandpaper to sensitive skin. I have to repeat this 4-5 times with lots of water and massaging the moisturizer into my skin. The make up does come off and nothing is left behind - to my surprise. My skin has settled down a lot - and I don't have the redness caused by removing make up. If I want to use a tiny bit of blusher, I use Bourjoise cream blush on top of the foundation which I just literally pat on a tiny amount with my fingertip. Hope this helps. My demo has sensitive skin too and uses Clinique foundation - a nightmare for me. She said one type does not suit all and it really is trial and error. Since I've been using the YSL, I have thought the sher foundation was actually very heavy - this feels much lighter but the cover is brilliant. Having said that, I used sher for 11 years and it was a godsend. Did you use sher too?

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Hi, when i was first diagnosed with rosacea 10 years or so ago now, i went to see helen sher on bond st. I bought the whole lot, cleansers, moisturiser, makeup etc. I stopped using the cleanser and moisturiser maybe 5 years ago now but continued to use the makeup, suited my skin very well and always got complimented on my skin. However since the sher system have closed, ive not been able to find any makeup that is as good. At the moment i am using jane iredale liquid foundation and chanel loose powder over the top. Do you know if the sher system makeup will become available again?

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They rang me to tell me that as Helen's husband had died and none of the children wanted to take on the business, they were closing. So I think the answer is no. I have a lot of the loose powder - probably 10 tubs of light and medium if you want me to post any of them to you? Unfortunately no make up left though.

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Ive actually been in contact with a guy called uwe schnieder who has said that he is working on replacement products

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Good grief - how did you find him?

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Alot of research lol, thats how desperate i am for the products. Check out silver msm. I dont think you got all of my reply. I would love to buy the powder from you, if thats ok with you? Have you ever had ipl?

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You can have the powder - I don't use it any more now that I've found the YSL - it is quite matt. I didn't get your whole reply. How do you want to send me your address? I'll parcel it up and send it. I also have pink face wash which I don't use either - unopened - should you want that? What's ipl?

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Hi binks, my address is 1 magpie place, milton court road, new cross, se14 6hq. Are you sure you dont mind? I no longer use their face wash, i am using dermadoctors born to be mild. Ipl is intense pulse light, pricey but it gets rid of broken blood vessels, redness etc. i have 1 or 2 sessions a year. I hope you get all of this reply.

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Hi binks, you dont seem to be getting all of my replies and i am not getting yours. Could you email me at anthily@googlemail.com

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Hi binks - hope you don't mind me asking but i used sher products for about 12 years and my rosacea all but disappeared - I've had it for 40 years. Now that i can't use sher myskin is out of control again and despite trying so many other products don't suit me. I am so desperate once again. Are you able to tell me what replacements you found please. The alternatives helen recommended were not suitable for me. Many thanks.

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I used Sher for 10 years until it closed. I always had blushing and sensitivity and my husband read about her products in the paper. They were a life saver and I was devastated when they rang to say they were no more. I struggled on with some of Helen's recommendations (which were no good for me), until last April when I developed an itchy rash on the left side of my face. I paid to see a dermatologist because my GP had no idea what it was and I did not feel able to wait the 3 months for an NHS appt. She was convinced it was an allergy, mainly because at first it was one sided. I had patch testing all over my back which all proved negative. By this time the redness had progressed to burning, itching and papules - it ruined my summer holiday last year. She gave me Rozex (metronidazole gel) which made the itching and redness worse and was useless. I was then put on Tetralysal 300 - a tetracycline antibiotic, for 3 months (from July to October). I was really not happy - as I also have IBS I hated the thought of long term antibiotics. They worked wonderfully though and my skin was clear until last month when I started on them again and within a week my skin was good again. It acts as an anti inflammatory which reduces flushing and stops the warmth needed for papules to develop - I can testify to this! I take Symprove to mitigate the effects on my gut. I use Aveeno Daily Moisturising Lotion to remove make up and then as a moisturiser - then Blephasil to remove eye make up and to clean eye lid margins. The dermo told me to gently wash Aveeno all over my face, then splash it off with warm water, repeating as often as is needed to remove make up. I also wet some cotton wool pads to help with this process. (Don't use dry cotton wool - it's like sandpaper for rosacea) Then I dry my face and apply more Aveeno as a moisturiser. I am happy with this - the fewer products the better. I know some people swear by Cetaphil but I prefer oatmeal based Aveeno. I use Clinique Redness Solutions foundation applied with a sponge - not fingers. And Clinique loose powder applied with one of my remaining Sher lambswool puffs. Does this help? I will use the Tetralysal for 3 months again (the main side effect for me is thrush but I have an plan for controlling that!) and no doubt will have to go on it again next year but I am fairly philosophical about it now. I joined the Rosacea Group forum but the advice is very sparse and there doesn't seem to be as useful a community as there is on this site. I am also done with well meaning but weird alternative suggestions because the ones I have tried have not worked. Obviously with every condition, lifestyle and diet is important, but modifying this for me is irrelevant - I eat healthily, exercise and don't smoke. The main trigger for me is hot and cold weather, and wind - and in the UK we have a lot of this!

I really do sympathise - it's a horrible condition.

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Thank you so much for tsking the time to reply. Our stories are almost identical in every way. I am desperately trying to find suitable products to cleanse and moisturise but I'm really struggling to find anything suitable

I'm using rosex at the moment and visiting a naturopath but nothing is working for me. My GP is no help and she won't refer me to a dermatologist so I guess I will need to go privately - I desperately want to stay away from oral antibiotics because they absolutely wrecked my system before and the side effects are awful - I just feel so desperate once again - my life is in shreds. I had found my miracle in sher but doubt there will be another. Thank you again.

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Which antibiotics were you taking? I was switched to doxycycline after the 3 month course ended last year - it was hideous and I could not tolerate it. The Tetralysal (Lymecycline is it's generic name) is side effect free except for the thrush, for me at least.

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Many years ago i was on a variety of tetracyclines and other broad spectrum varieties; more recently i have taken minocycline but binned them when i discovered one of the side effects was impaired hearing! I only have one good ear having lost my hearing in the other through a brain tumour a few years ago. Life is a bit rubbish at the moment. My GP is awful and the last time i went along she didn't even look at me the whole timd i was in there. I've heard from others that lymecycline is the one to go for but oh the thrush is a nightmare! I also suffered IBS in my 20s and 30s and i am convinced digestion and rosacea are linked. Many years sgo there was a really good article in thd press about aloe vera juice and how it helped IBS - it certainly helped me.

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It sounds like you could have sensitivies to naturally occuring bio chemicals found in foods. I would recommend the allergy hospital in Sydney as the best source of information on this. sswahs.nsw.gov.au/rpa/a...

After 20 years of suffering every day with IBS I finally have answers!

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Hi Binks, I have suffered with IBS for many years and about 7 years ago the flare up was so bad I lost masses of weight and although I have had every test available (including MRI) I still have it! However during the bad flare up I found that I also developed (what my GP said was rosacea) and an intolerance to alcohol, I only ever had the occasional glass of wine with a meal - but one mouthful and I was scarlet - it was very embarrassing. Quite frankly I don't think anyone has connected the other side effects of IBS and considering how many of us suffer very badly with it, it makes me angry. I know there is a connection with asthma and occasional eczema (and IBS) but they never listen. So in my humble opinion you have a VERY good point - I hope you manage to make someone listen, I would be interested to hear your results. Good luck!

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Hello Tansy-ann8, i read your post with interest. I have at the age of 43 appeared to have late onset asthma, having suffered the last 6 years with ibs and over 20 years with on and off eczema. What are the links between the 2 and where can I find out more? Thanks for posting this, I was so sure the 2 were linked because both flare up together. This is not something my GP or consultant would ever consider.

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Hello Bibabunny, the problem seems to be that the GP and for that matter Consultant never listen to the patient. No we don't have the training but we live with our bodies all the time, and frankly the older we get the longer we have lived with these bodies and I reckon we are in a position to know if things are related. I was determined to try to find out so basically just hunted on the internet. I honestly can't remember every where I tried - just started on Google but I ended up with an interesting paper by a Professor suggesting the IBS/Asthma/Rosacea (and other) relationship.' BINGO' I thought, sadly no one listens. So I am back to hunting the internet to try to find the paper that I stupidly didn't print!!!!!

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I have a dermo appointment next tuesday - if you find it, send me the reference and I'll take it with me. There has been so much response on here, and I bet it's just the tip of the iceberg. My GP could not be less interested and gave a great sigh when I asked whether I could try an alternative treatment instead of the antibiotics he was trying to give me (despite knowing the state of my guts for the past 25 years!!) I had no diagnosis either - obviously just one of those irritating people with sensitive skin again. I'm feeling a bit bitter - can you tell....

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Your GP Sighed ...... Mine told me to beware of on-line sites such as this one!!! I pointed out that this is the first on line site I have ever visited (fell on stony ground!) and that I have found great comfort just realising that I am not alone and not the only one to be embarrassed by continuous visits to the GPs surgery. Furthermore I am not stupid! I will keep hunting and post any results. Also you are right - we are the tip of the iceberg. Doesn't it beg the question that if we 'poor, untrained, hypochondriacs can work it out - why the hell can't they?

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I have had what doctors used to describe as acne rosacea in my teens and twenties to 40s, but in my 60s a doctor said it is rosacea. My small nose has always turned red in the slightest wind or even in should the sun peep out from behind a cloud. The nose is an escape point for the body and I think ibs is linked but I find that the rosacea is often improved when I am under attack with rosacea. My theory is that in my case the ibs finds the other routes /escape points.

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Do you mean your rosacea improves with an IBS attack (or vice versa?) - if so, this happens to me. My IBS is ok at the moment - my rosacea (or whatever it is) is awful.

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Thanks everyone - I know I am not alone now!!

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Thanks binks for bringing problems with rosacea and ibs together, there are times I just think I am falling apart. It is somewhat reassuring that I am not alone, although I do wish none of us suffered!

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Hi,

Some mention of a link here: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Small...

Funily enough I'm just about book in with my GP as I seem to be getting persistent and spreading red blotchy skin on my cheeks and I suspect it's rosacea :-(

Cheers,

J

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Good link - thanks jimb0123.

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Just looked at the link - it's all very interesting. As soon as you look into treatment for something and there are thousands of possibilities (e.g. IBS, rosacea) you just know that no one really understands the condition.Not sure I fancy the Rifaximin though- it sounds a bit heavy duty.

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There must be a PhD in this for someone!!

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That's amazing timing as I was thinking of posing the same question in the last few days. Both started for me about 2 years ago but I hadn't linked them, and was too embarrassed to mention the IBS to the doctor. I recently had a stool test done that I was told would show if I did have IBS or not and it came back negative. The doctor then continued to give me advice on what to do for IBS including foodmop. Its so frustrating not to have definitive answers but really good to hear others experiences and advice.

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OMG there are so many of us with the linked symptoms. BINKS you are right, the must be a Phd in this for someone out there............

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I developed acne rosacea about 3 yrs ago. It occurred around the same time as I went through the menopause. It really was awful and very embarrassing. The doctor prescribed the usual culprits of antibiotic cream for 4 months, then antibiotics for 12 months which I was really against and then a combination of the two- nothing worked!

I request a referral to a private dermatologist who prescribed me with Isotretinoin which is a vitamin A retinol. Finding the correct dose was quite easy and within 3 weeks I noticed a huge difference. After staying on this magical dose for 6 months it was decided to find a low maintenance I could stay on indefinitely. I am now maintaining with lovely clear skin. I still get the facial redness with wine, curry and other things but on the whole I am very happy. I also developed IBS around the same time which got worse until I decided to stop drinking milk, think it was the lactose in the milk but have now become quite 'bunged up' so will be trying magnesium citrate to see how I get on. Don't know if this helps anyone.

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Do you mean Roaccutane? My 27 year old daughter took it for 6 months and her skin is amazing. The side effects were awful though - it scares me to be honest.

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Binks, Yes! thats the other name for it. Initially the dryness was a bit awkward I.e eyes and ears believe it or not,but the highest dose was 60mgs which I worked up to. I drank lots of water to combat the dryness and lots of greasy creams to help my skin. After a second appointment I reduced it and reduced it again to 20mgs alternate days. My consultant says I could stay on this dose indefinitely with no health concerns as it is extremely low. I find if I forget a dose I start to get spotty again. Rosacea is an aggressive long standing skin complaint that is very difficult to get rid of, when you think it's gone it comes back!!

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I have IBS and rosacia and was prescribed Roaccutane. I would never ever touch it. In fact it is banned in the US because of teenagers being given this for teenage acne have committed suicide because of deep depression caused by Roaccutane. My son was prescribed this at 24 yrs old because of his acne, I begged him not to go on it after I read the potential side effects. He ignored me. He suffered 6 months of deep depression, he couldn't work anymore, he was crying constantly, refused to see his girlfriend and would never want to be alone....luckily after all the family relayed round and kept constant watch on him he slowly recovered, but it could have be disastrous.

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I was very upset when my daughter chose to take it - she's 27. She had no depressive illnesses but some of the side effects (bleeding from her bottom etc) were very worrying and a year on, she still has strange symptoms which I wonder about. Her skin is beautiful and for the first time in her life she is happy - no one can underestimate the anxiety caused by horrible skin so I understand why she did it. For me though, the risks are too great and having read about it's mechanism of action, the fact that Roche stopped selling it in the USA, and one of the scientists who worked on it tried to put his scientific findings about the drug for auction on the internet (Roche took out an injunction to stop him) all horrify me. I know about the colon removal and the $23 million payout - along with all the others - believe me I have looked into it. I wish I hadn't when my daughter was taking it!Thank you for your reply.

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I have both and my doctor said they are linked.

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That's interesting - did they say how?

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This is all very interesting. I have had IBS symptoms for as long as I can remember but always thought it was something to do with my menstrual cycle so just accepted it as bad luck (as I'm sure a lot of women do!). I found this very interesting article relating to that here..

aboutibs.org/site/signs-sym...

It all rings very true for me.

Then 4 years ago I developed joint problems (swelling in knuckles etc) and rosacea. The NHS treated them as entirely separate problems, even though they developed simultaneously- and even then they only treated the symptoms. No one ever mentioned my IBS or gut health. The dermatologist even laughed at me when I said I was trying to adapt my diet saying rosacea is not linked to diet (even though it originates from a gut bacteria!!)

I am almost certain that the rosacea and joint issues are all linked to my Gut.

Regarding the rosacea- I took the antibiotics for a long time and applied the topical creams. I think it helped at first but the second major flare up I had and these methods seemed much less effective.

In the end I stopped taking the antibiotics after several months of no joy. Instead I tried diet changes- I cut out gluten and dairy and my skin got a bit better.

My skin/rosacea is definitely much worse just before my period.

I recently started on low fodmaps- I'm not sure if it's helped my IBS yet as it's early days, and I think my skin is worse but this could be where I am in my cycle.

It really is a nightmare trying to unpick cause and effect!

Thanks for al the previous posts- I found it all very interesting and helpful.

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Dermalmd Rosacea Serum is great. The big thing I was worried about was it breaking out my skin or feeling heavy, but my skin is clear, especially on my cheeks where my rosacea often flares up. And it goes on very light and smooth. A little goes a long way as well and dermalmd was a great price for what you get. It isn't a miracle worker, and I still have some slight redness, but it is definitely an improvement from my other moisturizer. Plus, I have only had it for a few weeks, so will be interested to see how it continues to improve my skin after a 90 days. Great product!

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