Patch of inflamed, flaky skin about the size of a 10p piece on cheek. Does this sound familiar?

Patch of inflamed, flaky skin about the size of a 10p piece on cheek. Does this sound familiar?

It's tempting to blame the thyroid for everything, but I've tried every cream the GP could think of and it's still there.

Yesterday I got to see an endocrinologist, who also didn't have a clue what was causing it, and suggested a biopsy (having assured me it's not cancerous). I'm not keen to have a scar on my cheek.

Wonder if this rings bells with anyone?

37 Replies

  • Hi Sue-F. Yes I get something like this. I saw a specialist who said it was Seborrheic Excema which is basically an allergy to airborn yeast. Mine comes and goes. He prescribed hydrocortisone cream which I was very unhappy about using on my face and I very rarely do. Luckily I had it quite badly for a couple of years, and now I get it only occasionally. I did a bit of research and I found that Daktarin Gold (available in the chemist over the counter) is very good as it contains ketoconazole.

    Whether it is connected to thyroid I don't know. I did however develop allergies to all sorts of things 8 - 9 years ago which corresponds to the time I now believe my thyroid problems started.

    I get it on one check and in the crease of my nose on one side. I've got quite a dab hand at covering it with Avon concealer when it flares up!

  • Thank you. It's good to know I'm not the only one. However, I've tried hydrocortisone cream of various types, including one combined with an anti-fungal agent, and they did nothing at all.

    I'll certainly try the Daktarin Gold and see what happens. Like you I've become expert with the concealer stick!

  • Thyroid problems and skin rashes? Definitely.

    I have an identical patch on my right thumb, left elbow and inside the left thigh which are nearly always there in differing degrees, plus a patch on my forehead which seems to move about! All about the same size. I put my husband's Betnovate RD 4 to 1 on the body ones and they all get a bit better but come back. I use a weaker cream, which also has a steroid, on my face, but I notice it is worse when I have a few bad nights. I have to admit that the steroids don't actually make them go away completely.

    The most common form of skin problem in hypothyroidism (apart from pretibial myxoedema) is eczema, and in particular what they call eczema craquele, if it is left unmoisturised for a few days it becomes dry and cracked like a dried-up riverbed. In between treatment use a moisturiser without any perfume.

    If it itches and drives you mad (esp at night) get some Balneum Plus, it not only moisturises but it has an anti-itching effect. It was recommended by my husband's dermatologist for his psoriasis and he also recommends it for most forms of eczema. It definitely helps me to rest better at night when it irritates me the most.

    The marks left by the patches are also very much improved by Bio-oil which I put on when they have cooled down a bit and it speeds up the healing process.

    Unfortunately for me I have not been able to put any kind of makeup on my face for years, even Clinique irritates my skin after the first few applications. So, for better or worse, I have to go 'au naturel'!

  • Just did a google and found this


  • Sorry link does not work. Try again:

  • Can't get either of the links to work I'm afraid.

  • When I was first diagnosed with hypothyroidism it was because my eyebrows had fallen out. Since then I regularly get patches of dry flaky skin where my eyebrows used to be (they have never grown back) and also on my eyelids. I have a patch by my armpit and also on my back. It is very itchy and flaky and I have tried all sorts of different creams. Sometimes it looks like I have had a flamethrower on it as it is so red and inflamed. I will try the Daktarin cream - I also use Aveeno cream whilch helps too.

  • Thanks for your reply shortone - it looks as though it is linked to hypothyroidism.

  • I get a lot of dry skin and eczema. I use a regular moisturiser on my face now and it seems to have improved the problem. However I still get it on my arms, especially in Winter. Dry skin complaints are definitely related to hypothyroidism.

  • It could possibly be Lichen Sclerosus which can be very itchy - I have dry scaly patches in axillae & various other places - diagnosed by a Dermatologist & like Hypothyroidism, linked with the Auto immune system. A strong Hydrocortisone ointment put on very sparingly & very intermittently does help but should not be over used due to its skin thinning properties. The Dermatologist took a tiny biopsy to be sure of the diagnosis.

  • Thanks. Mine isn't at all itchy and doesn't respond to hydrocortisone. They're going to do a biopsy on me too. Did yours leave any sort of a scar? This worries me a bit because it's on my face.

  • Yes it did leave a little scar but wasn't in a significant place. I would have thought that they could just do a tiny scrape from your face which wouldn't leave any mark at all.

  • Thanks - that's reassuring!

  • I get areas like this on my neck, face and eyelids when I am under medicated.

    My skin is generally dry since becoming hypothyroid.

  • I get scaly red patches of psoriasis on my scalp and forehead and in my ears. Sometimes it's very itchy. It is autoimmune, like Hashi's. I recently twigged that eggs (which I eat for breakfast to get some protein in the morning) make it worse.

  • i am hyperthyroid and also get this

    patches on my cheek by the side of my nose some on my arms in small circles and a very flaky forehead which seems to appear if i ve stopped my meds or under medicated

  • Ask for a referral to a dermatologist any patches

    That don't heal after treatment should be reviewed

    By a dermatologist.

  • Just realised I wrote endocrinologist in my post - this should have read 'dermatologist'. So, I've seen one, and she didn't know what it was either, hence the proposed biopsy.

  • I already have eczema, since birth but over the last few years get these occasional circular raised rashes in various places. No docs can tell me what is is and generally give me steroid cream or anti-fungal cream, they both seem to clear it up but they always come back at some point.

  • Hi - I use Australian Bodycare body lotion on everything skin-related, including burns, along with their tea tree oil, and generally always get a good result. Tea tree oil & lotion are amazing and harmless so just keep putting it on until you see a response. Also, a recent discovery that I am very low in B12 has started me on injections: I mention it because the symptoms for low B12 can be very like some for low thyroid. for which I take ERFAThyroid. So I am hopeful my hair loss and some other things will finally turn around. Good luck!

  • Wow - lots of new ideas! :-)

    I could get the link to word - odd! email me and I can send you the info -



  • Link works now, thanks.


  • I have scaly red inflamed patches on cheek and nose and forehead, don't resemble your picture so much but have noticed that other friends with same problem also are hypothyroid. The doctor diagnosed it as rosacea- the celtic disease- and pointed out ( confirmed by my observation) that it was exacerbated by sun, cheese, sugar and alcohol- of these sugar and alcohol are worst for me.

    I lead a remarkably healthy life in order to avoid these things, but when I lapse he proof is there for everyone to see!

  • I successfully used Canestan cream for Rosacea a few years ago. It cleared in 3 days. Janet.

  • I have had psoriasis for years before diagnosed with hypothyroidism...I have recently discovered L'Occitane products from the store in Aberdeen but products can be ordered online, i use a pure Shea butter for skin and there is a sensitive scalp shampoo and conditioner which I use and are great

  • I'd be tempted to see a homeopath - rashes can arise from toxins being released from the body (part of the healing process) they should be able to help you with it - in a more gentle way - not sure of the GPs approach of trying lots of different types of hydrocortisone without knowing the cause of the rash, as it thins the skin... good luck

  • Thank you, I thought it was just me, this was something that had flared up a while a go and its a small patch like a 10p at the base of my spine, I was going to mention it to the doctor next time I go, I have tried all sorts of hydrocortisone creams, but it is still there, at least I know I am not alone.......

  • Really think you should have agreed to have a diagnostic biopsy

  • I did! My appointment is 5th April.

  • Wow - I'm quite overhwelmed by all the responses, so hope you don't mind if I say ONE BIG THANK YOU! I shall work my way through the list of suggestions. It looks pretty clear that this is yet another thing we can blame the thyroid for.



  • I have 2.. one on the back of my neck just in the hair line and one on my left ankle

    tried anti-fungal creams and tried steroid creams nothing works. It is probably thyroid related as the skin thickens it loses moisture and is prone to infections and issues generally.. well documented by Eugene Hertoghe in 1915... just one of the forgotten symptoms... sorry

  • mine isn't on my face mine was small patch on thigh 3years ago.I had it scraped and said it was nothing .it then went up back of leg all over trunk if I went swimming I looked like leper .3 doctors later creams steroids no help .my levo is about right now and taking it vit d nd fish oil and using cream to wash with .its just annoying when there's no real answer .

  • I get this on my scalp, it is like a patch of baby's 'cradle cap' - it comes and goes but is not itchy or inflamed. No one seemed very interested when I mentioned it to specialist and GP. I think it is when i am run down and meds not working. Interesting about the eggs though, so think I will try and avoid them as much as possible

  • Yes, definitely give it a go. I was convinced mine was due to reintroducing dairy, which I had avoided for years because of congestion, but one day the penny dropped and I googled it and it turns out a lot of people get psoriasis flare-ups from eggs. Like clockwork, only a day or two later the red patches had gone.

  • Homoeopathy works well on skin conditions. Try Hypercal mother tincture available from Helios <01892537254> Let me know if you need more info. Ging

  • i used to get red flaky, itchy patches along forehead and down side of my face. i started using Liz Earle cleanser and moisturiser and it cleared up and has not come back.been hypo for about 20 years

  • Thanks Kathi - I'll bear that in mind after I've had biopsy results - mine doesn't itch though, so it may not be the same. Sorry for late response - been away.


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