Sunday, 11 August 2013

Thread vein removal (hopefully) with a cream, Day 1

Well, I am a few weeks into my foray into blogging so I thought I should at the very least introduce myself so "Hello!" (just a quick aside - absolutely NO makeup today - it would defeat the object completely!).

This is me (with my husband's mess cropped out of the picture). If you look on the left hand side of the photos my two pet snakes, Catherine and  Delilah are trying to get in on the act! Maybe more about them for another post if anyone isn't too squeamish. They are gorgeous little corn snakes and absolute dolls. Both of them enjoy tummy rubs and getting their chins tickled.

Anyway, this isn't what this post is about. I was in hospital last February for respite (I have uncontrolled epilepsy) and they found out I was suffering from something called Premature Ovarian Failure from a routine blood screen. In a nutshell, it means I am going through the menopause before the age of 40. If anyone is interested, there is a link here

I haven't got a problem with the fertility side of it as I have 4 gorgeous children already and they are well on their way to being grown up. We have 3 boys and 1 girl. They are 21 (b), 17 (b+g - twins) and 16 (b) so fortunately I wasn't too upset when I was diagnosed about it. 

What I wasn't expecting was the severity of the side effects on my skin (amongst other things). Fortunately I haven't gained much weight but my hair is falling out at an alarming rate, the hot flushes are horrendous and my taste buds are up the shoot.  I have left the weirdest side effect until last - my eyes have changed colour. They used to be steel grey but now have flecks of brown in them. Anyone any ideas as I am all out! 

Below you are going to see a picture that it has taken a lot for me to post up. It is me completely bare of anything other than moisturiser. Not even a tinted one as another side effect of POF is thread veins in the face, and an exacerbation of the dark circles under my eyes. The circles were already pretty bad due to the combination drug therapy I am on for my epilepsy and the pain I have from having a broken back (I am in a wheelchair) but BOY do look bad! (Please excuse the really large spot too - that decided to make an appearance on the day I decided to do this, i.e. today). 

You might notice my face is a bit lop sided too (I had a stroke a few years ago) so it isn't the prettiest sight without makeup on! All I can say is thank god for learning to contour and highlight my face subtly. On to the subject I want to talk about....

Oh yes, the thread veins! They are pretty horrific. I have tinkered with the photo a little as the light in my room isn't the greatest so you can see just how bad they are. The only way I can describe it is that in the last 3 years, somebody has given me completely different skin. I knew being on the medication I was would change my skin but it wasn't that bad. I switched moisturiser (I used to have normal skin, I now have dry/sensitive skin), switched out my foundations and bases and all was good. 

The problem is, the veins take an awful lot of coverage and on bad days, I really don't have the inclination to do that much about them. I know I look way over 40 but I am still in my 30's and to be honest, that really upsets me quite a bit. I always used to have pretty good skin but those days are long gone. 

Fortunately, whilst I was in respite they arranged for me to see a dermatologist as the first signs of POF was the huge flare up I had on my face. I up until then I could count the amount of spots I had had on my hands. Now it is nearly all the time. 

She recommended that I use a Vitamin K topical cream (info about it is here). To quote Wikipedia...

Vitamin K may be applied topically, typically as a 5% cream, to diminish postoperative bruising from cosmetic surgery and injections, to treat broken capillaries (spider veins), to treat rosacea, and to aid in the fading of hyperpigmentation and dark under-eye circles"

These creams are available on the NHS but given I don't have it really badly, I don't qualify. Please don't get me wrong, I am not complaining in the least but it made hunting one down quite difficult. 

I have had a bad few months health wise so it is only really recently that I have got my act together to track some down. I managed to track some down on Amazon for £5.65 but I am guessing that I got the old packaging as when I went to look for the link this morning, it has gone up and has been rebranded a little. It is available (from the same company) here now.

As of today, I will be applying it as directed. Twice daily to moisturised skin on the affected areas. As can also benefit dark circles too I am using it on there. The dermatologist told me not to expect overnight result, she said it will take up to a month before I start to see any improvement if it is going to work for me so this is my blog entry on my first day. 4 weeks from today expect to be equally freaked out by my mugshot for comparison!

Apparently, this is also great for people who bruise easily and it can speed up the healing time.

The reason I have shown my right cheek is that is where it is worst. I am going to take weekly photos at home, but don't want to blast you all with irrelevant blog entries given that I have been told it will take up to a month to work. 

I am quite looking forwards to trying this out. I don't hold out much hope for it so would love to be proven wrong. That would just be a complete bonus for me. 

Something I mentioned earlier was my hair loss. I did make an effort and straighten it up for having my "naked face" photo today but it is painfully thin (radiotherapy doesn't work wonders for hair either, believe you and me). I had that 4 years ago now and my once very thick and curly hair is now thin, limp frizz. It can get me down a little as I get looked at enough and if I am having a "bad hair day" that just makes it worse from my perspective! 

I have decided to combat one thing at a time, so if I can perhaps see a little improvement in my dark circles and thread veins, I am hoping to look for something to thicken my hair up a little. I can do it with what my better half calls "smoke and mirrors" (i.e. hairdryers, back combing, mousse etc) but I am going to look into investing in any decent hair treatments that might help.

Anyway, that is is for today, if anyone wants to know any more about POF, or knows somebody going through it I am more than happy to give my email out to talk to them. Even if somebody wants to chat about the epilepsy, or being in a wheelchair, I am your girl. Just leave me a comment and I will get back to you.

Hope you all have a great Sunday

Fi xoxox


  1. Your ever so brave starting a beauty blog as a complete newbie to Beauty. Im glad you have your daughter to show you the ropes. I love seeing mother/Daughter relationships like yours. Its nice to see your ongoing defiance in light of your health issues, as a daughter of a stroke survivor this makes me smile. Hope the Vitamin K cream works for you :)

    Much Love

    Leanne | Topazstarz

    1. Thank you so much for your lovely comment Leanne. Brave? No! Daft? Most definitely! I just wanted to start a blog where I could hopefully make some friends who could guide me in the right direction of not looking like an old hag whilst I was still in my 30's!

      I thought I should just jump straight in there - I have no idea about the hierarchy or how it works but I am having a great time reading some fantastic blogs and learning lots of tips and tricks. I went out to hospital today with my hair done and makeup on for the first time in, ohhh, forever! My husband was really impressed too. Bonus!

      I am so glad your Mum got through her stroke with you for support. I was very young when I had mine (in my early 20's) and the children were very young so they don't really remember much about it fortunately.

      I am DEFINITELY hoping the Vitamin K cream works too! It was only cheap and has got to be worth a try for sure.

      Fi xoxox