polymorphic light eruption

August 2, 2008

we arrived home after a rather pleasant drive from asheville. time in the car passed quickly as we plowed through 3 episodes of this american life. unexpectedly, my favorite was an economics-themed episode which described the current subprime mortgage crisis in terms dumbed-down enough for ME to understand. seriously, that is rather amazing on ira glass’s part as typically, nothing turns me off more than talking about economics — investments, interest rates, and the like. when it comes to money, all i want someday is to have enough of it to not really have to think about it (ie, pay someone else to deal with it for me).

anyway, so about that light eruption — i walked inside and realized my head was feeling sort of hot. i looked in the mirror in the bathroom and was dismayed to see that my entire face (and to a lesser degree my arms and chest) is covered in a weird bumpy red rash! it looks sort of viral, like the exanthems i am used to seeing on infants and toddlers. but suspiciously, it seems to only encompass areas that got some sun over the last few days — in particular yesterday at the biltmore, because i stupidly forgot to apply my typical 1″ coating of 60 SPF sunscreen. after a little internet research (and yes, sometimes i duck out and google the rashes on my patients’ skin, too. the internet is full of good pictures!), i think it’s just a polymorphic light eruption which is code for ‘skin that is so shocked to be receiving sunlight that it just goes all crazy and breaks out into an ugly rash’.

maybe it will start to peel off and give me an elephant-woman sort of look for the PICU, prompting them to send me home and give me another week off. i can only hope.

ps: i did go hiking 5 days ago in NC, so i am in the prime window for rocky mountain spotted fever. however, i do not think it is that because:
– it doesn’t look like that kind of rash
– i don’t have a fever, muscle aches, headache, or nausea
but trust me, if i do come down with any of the aforementioned symptoms, i will be downing doxycycline at a moment’s notice.

1 Comment

  • Reply Tanya March 10, 2019 at 7:30 pm

    Oh my goodness, this is what my brother has!!

    My poor geeky computer nerd teenage little brother spends so little time outdoors that when he does he gets this rash over him (moreso when it’s hot). We’ve been wondering for aaaages what brought it on – thank you for clearing that up for us!

    Your cooking/running schedule looks great – just goes to show what you can do with a bit of time management 😉

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