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I seem to have found a great dermatologist. I found out just by talking to him that his specialty is not only skin disorders, but he has a PhD as well and knows an awful lot about auto-immune disorders.

I am trying to find a clear link between my recent skin issues and my everlasting dry eyes. Maybe after all this time Rosacea is finally rearing its ugly head.

We know that I have Meibomitis/MGD. I don't have any flaking of the eyelids though. My eyes are just severely dry and irritated, no matter what we try. The Rosacea did not appear until very recently though. Isn't it usually the other way around? Doesn't the Rosacea usually surface first, before any sort of dry eyes? I guess I am just unique.

Missy, there really are no tests to do to determine if you have Rosacea or Sebhorreic Dermatitis. You just have to have a well trained, experienced Dermatologist. This is the first time I have been to this particular Dermatologist and he took one look at me and knew exactly what is wrong. Plus, I also have some Dermatitis on my elbows which would make it all the more possible for me to have it on my face (if you have it on one area of the body, chances are greater that you'll have it on another.) The auto-immune disorder most commonly associated with the skin is Scleroderma. I don't have that, but he thinks that all of my problems (dry eyes, MS, poor resistance, skin problems) are all related regardless. And I agree with him 100%. It's time for me to go back and see my Immunologist again with this new development.

Mike, I am sorry that your mother suffers so badly with her Sjogrens. Don't peop-le with Sjogrnes have skin problems too? I have not been positively diagnosed with it because my blood tests (ANA and SS-A/SS-B) have always come back "borderline". I *do* have some dry mouth, and I have had to have my nose cauterized several times over the years due to nosebleeds from dryness. However, the dry mouth and dry nose are not even one tenth as bothersome as the dry eyes are for me. Now I am also starting to get dry skin. Another reason to think that I have some other auto-immune thing going on that is causing all of this is that I have MS, which is believed to be an auto-immune disorder. If you have one auto-immune disorder chances are you have more. Maybe now that I am having dry skin too, something will show up in my blood tests that will finally put all of this together and concretely link my dry eyes to everything else.

I asked the dermatologist to send a report to my ophthalmologist, because maybe my new skin problems will shed some more light on my eye problems. My ophthalmologist is VERY interested in this, and is really concerned about what is going on with me. He really wants to figure this out, and he said he's really curious to see what a dermatologist has to say. I had been to one about 5 years ago but she really didn't diagnose me with anything because I was pretty much asymptomatic as far as my skin went. This is the first time I've ever experienced anything like this. Until now there has been ABSOLUTELY NOTHING that would lead me to believe that I have Rosacea or anything else wrong with my face. In fact, people usually comment on what a great complexion I have. Other than the occasional wart removal, I never went to a dermatologist.

I am just wondering how many people have had these same kinds of problems, particularly the dry eye and the skin problems (without having flaking of the eyelids) and have found them all to be related.

Unfortunately I cannot take oral anti-biotics for the MGD. We tried Doxycycline and I wound up with a lot of stomach problems. Also, I have a very weak immune system and my resistance is very low. Being on long term anti-biotics would only make that worse.

The dermatologist gave me a few different medications to use on my face and I have to see him in 6 weeks. He said that he can really only treat the skin condition, and to just make sure that the ophthalmologist knows about this new development and let him take care of the eyes. (Of course. :))

Even when I went to the ophthalmologist yesterday he noticed something wrong with my face. But he said he's not a dermatologist and he can't make that diagnosis. It is VERY clear that something is not right with my face! My skin is red and sore and itchy and flaking. Basically, my skin feels like my eyelids feel all the time (but my eyelids don't flake.)

The last dermatologist that tried to prescribe something for my face (even when I was not experiencing symptoms, she insisted that I had skin problems! Maybe she was right after all!) She told me to use Elidel cream, and to put it on my eyelids too! Since when did she become an ophthalmologist??? I never went back to her again.

So I know that the creams that the dermatologist prescribed for my face are not going to cure my eyes, but maybe his diagnosis will shed more light on the eye problems. I am also looking forward to discussing this with my primary care doctor and my immunologist to see what they have to say.
John, Ocular Rosacea and dry eye are not really one and the same. One may be accompanied by the other, but usually with Ocular Rosacea, you would have more Blepharitis and Meibomian Gland Dysfunction, not *only* dryness. My Rosacea is not that bad either, but my Dermatologist also said that I have something called Sebhorreic Dermatitis on my face. My face is itchy and peeling. So he is treating me for everything. I have known since my dry eyes started in October 2001 that I have MGD. But I don't really have Blepharitis. (my eyelids are not flaky) However, my ophthalmologist never really made any mention of Ocular Rosacea until my recent skin problems popped up. The reason for that being that until now I have had absolutely perfect skin for my entire life, and never had any reason at all to think that I would have Rosacea. AND, MGD and/or Blepharitis can occur without Rosacea as well. My dermatologist thinks it has got to be related, and now that the Rosacea is surfacing we can probably say that at least a percentage of my eye problems has something to do with that. I have not had a chance to talk with the ophthalmologist about this in depth (have not seen him since I went to the Dermatologist). But I will be seeing him on next week and we'll talk about it.

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