Keratosis Pilaris

Ever since he was born, Maks has had these little bumps all over his arms, torso and parts of his legs. In the summer, the bumps even spread to his cheeks and forehead. They don’t change shape, itch or ooze anything. They just seem to exist as part of his skin.

As an overanxious first time mother, I took him to the doctor and was told the bumps were perfectly normal and they would eventually go away on their own, I was not to worry. But after about a year the bumps were still there so it was back to the doctor we went. The second visit to the doctor was during the height of summer, the bumps were clearly visible on his flushed face, so much so they made the doctor take notice. This visit proved more productive than the first and it resulted in Maks being diagnosed as allergic to sun screen. We were told to use sunscreen sparingly on his body and not at all on his face.

OK, that’s a start. But not using sunscreen didn’t prevent the bumps. In fact, even when no sunscreen was used, Maks still had the bumps and he was starting to get self-conscious about them. The other kids were starting to notice them and the obnoxious ones started to make fun of him and his bumps. So it was back to the doctor we went and went and went over several years. Each visit resulted in being told that what Maks had was normal and he would eventually outgrow it. I was never actually told what the bumps were or if there was anything, I could do to them. After many visits, I convinced the doctor to refer Maks to a dermatologist, at least that way we could get a second opinion and some sort of formal diagnosis as to what the bumps were.

We waited close to six months before Maks could get in to see the dermatologist. The dermatologist ended up telling us more than our family doctor did though. Maks has Keratosis Pilaris; a common skin condition. The bumps are supposed to start in your teens and eventually disappear by the time you are 30. Maks is one of the few kids who got it before he hit puberty. While there is no cure for Keratosis Pilaris, there are loads of treatments. Most of them are topical solutions made up of Salic acid you apply right to the bumps. These solutions help to get rid of the bumps, and in some cases, the bumps disappear altogether. All of the ointments were available over the counter. None of them required a prescription. And the best part? The ointments could be used on kids as young as two. So Maks would totally be able to try some of the treatments and hopefully find one that worked for him. With summer coming up this is great news.

Yay for progress!

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