Georgia woman left bloody, bed-ridden and spoon-fed after extreme reaction to steroid cream

Mrs Wright, a swing dancer said she tried ‘anything and everything’ to treat her skin, including making visits to a range of health experts, trying various creams, medications and supplements. A Georgia woman has been the victim of a severe skin condition that has left her bedbound for months and unable to feed herself. Treatment for emotional effects of steroids usually involves the reduction of the dose you’ve been prescribed.

This means infections are more difficult to diagnose at an early stage. Take your steroids exactly as your health professional has told you. For example, if you are suspected of having a food allergy, all suspect foods will be removed from your diet, and reintroduced one at a time to see if they cause a reaction. Once the allergy causing food has been identified, you should not get any more rashes as long as you avoid it in the future.

Increased numbers of white blood cells

If you use a steroid under a bandage (making it occlusive) or via a plaster it will also have the same effect. Side effects on the skin may be apparent within two weeks of use. Long term use of cyclophosphamide is considered undesirable and has
been linked to an increased risk of some types of cancer, eg cancer of
the bladder.

Skin involvement is common in lupus, with 60-70% of people with lupus reporting some skin problem. The rashes seen in lupus can be specific in shape and pattern. Rashes caused by lupus may get better after a few days or weeks, but can last longer or even be permanent. Each relapse is different and in most cases your symptoms will gradually improve on their own so you may not need to take steroids.


Tell your doctor or nurse if you have headaches, nosebleeds, blurred or double vision or shortness of breath. Your healthcare team may give you a small card to carry with you while you are taking steroids. This is so that anyone else treating you, such as your dentist or in an emergency, knows that you are on steroids. These are manufactured versions of the hormones produced by the adrenal glands .

You should also read the Patient Information Leaflet included with your medicine. The cases have been reported over a wide time-period, and the majority of reports are from patients. The terms used for reporting are reactions that are already listed in the product information, which impacts how we detect newly emerging safety concerns to medicines. Most of these side effects are already listed individually for topical corticosteroids.

Topical steroid withdrawal reactions are usually seen after long-term use of these medicines. They have also been seen after as little as 2 months of continual use in children. Withdrawal reactions are also usually seen if the medicine was used very often or for prolonged periods of time.

Adrenal gland conditions: hydrocortisone tablets

Topical corticosteroids are known to constrict blood vessels in the skin and therefore some reddening of the skin would be expected on withdrawal. However, this specific kind of topical steroid withdrawal reaction could be an extreme form of this reaction. The lack of a consistent terminology has also been raised within the literature and has potentially led to the condition being under-represented.

It has provided Natalie with a light at the end of the tunnel. Natalie said her symptoms weren’t as severe during her younger years but she had problematic areas, particularly her ears and elbow creases. In December Natalie was forced to take medical leave from her job due to the severity of her condition, even wetting the bed on a few occasions due to lacking the strength to make it to the bathroom.