MDs are so specialized!

5-12-07 I posted a message about pain at the site of my PM, possible skin erosion, and the cardiologist's recommendation that I consider moving my 4-month-old PM under the muscle or breast tissue to eliminate the pain. A few days later I saw my primary care physician who noted I'd developed a keloid (painful overgrowth of scar tissue) at my incision. A few days later I saw a General Surgeon who recommended I wait 2-3 months to see if the pain lessens without more surgery. Today I saw a dermatologist. She shrugged her shoulder, and said "You do not have skin erosion, but you do have a keloid. Those are very painful. Do you want me to fix it right now?" I was disbelieving and incredulous. She said Caucasians (which I am) only extremely rarely develop keloids, but African Americans develop them much more often and they get even bigger. She injected 3 shots of an anti-inflammatory directly into my scar (yes, that was painful briefly) and said the severe itching and pain should begin to dissipate almost immediately and be gone within 1-2 weeks. She said if I have remaining itching or pain in a month, to return for one more treatment. It's been 2 hours since I got the injections, and already the itching is completely gone and pain is significantly better. I have 3 small, tender holes in my scar. I asked the dermatologist why none of the other MDs I've seen suggested this simple solution and she said "Because none of them are dermatologists -- I don't know anything about pacemakers and they don't know anything about skin and scars." So for all of you with keloids, go see a dermatologist! I do think I have another kind of pain too, that comes with heavy lifting activities. I plan to curtail that sort of thing for a month or two and see if I can get to pain-free. Meanwhile, I'm thrilled to have one problem solved and hopeful I'll avoid un-needed surgery as a result. As we so often urge each other on this site, keep asking questions, keep seeking second opinions, and find someone willing to solve your problems! Take care, Cathryn


4 Comments

thanks for the info

by queen_beez - 2007-05-21 06:05:25

I ,too, am having some problems at my site. I see my cardio tomorrow and was gonig to see what could be done because my site hurts and the skin is so thin it feels like the pm is going to pop out at any time. I am going to keep your info in mind when talking about my options. The last thing I want at this time is surgury to re-place the pm . Thank you for sharing your insight.
Susan

Too Cool

by randrews - 2007-05-21 10:05:47

Congratulations Cathryn,
It seems that we are swimming upstream so often that a gift such as what you got is wonderful. I know your site has been bothering you for a while, and man, the under the muscle thing would have been huge. Avoid the heavy lifting if you can and keep up the running if you can. You are a great encouragement with all your posts.
Rusty

wouldn't ya know!

by bambi - 2007-05-22 10:05:17

You are so amazingly on top of things in dealing with your health issues! I am SO happy you kept persuing this issue, and found a resolution that didn't involve more surgery! Take care!
Bambi

So glad I read this!

by KarenLL - 2007-05-23 09:05:37

Thanks for the information. I had my PM in March and it is still bothering me. The way mine is placed the top corner protrudes quite a bit out of my skin, wearing bras and bra tops at the gym drive me crazy, everything catches on it. I am fairly muscular and the PM sits on top of one muscle...not too attractive. I do have a reddish bump that gets really itchy and hurts, after readding your post it sounds like it's the beginning of a keloid . I have never heard of this before. So if it gets worse I will be sure to try a dermatologist! Thanks again!

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Pacemakers are very reliable devices.