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Male Flushing Issue
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Male Flushing Issue

I am searching for answers to a male flushing issue which has been going on for 3 years now. I am a 51 year old male. In shape, blood pressure is always in the normal range (or slightly below). The only other issue I have is some minor digestive issues. I take 20mg of Omeprazole about every-other day to control. I do take vitamins daily. I did eliminate these for several weeks to determine if there was an issue with Niacin.
I have often bouts of facial flushing. When this occurs my face is warm to the touch but my skin color does not change drastically. In addition my ears feel the same effect. I have tried to identify triggering mechanisms. The only ones which I have been able to identify are; Warm environments without airflow trigger these bouts. A warm day or exposure to the sun does not have the same effect.  Alcohol sometimes is another trigger. Very stressful situations also trigger this condition.  Food does not seem to trigger the flushing. I have noticed a sneeze can also trigger a minor bout of flushing.
This Condition can manifest itself from severe, almost sweating to a minor warm feeling.  During certain bouts I have a feeling of being chilled. I do notice the need to urinate more frequently which this condition manifests itself.
I have gone through about every blood test, urine and stool tests – I saw an Endocrinologist and went through a barrage of Testosterone treatments. I had a CT to the head and neck. I have seen several doctors including an infectious disease doctor. My family doctor seems to think since all these tests have been performed it is nothing serious yet I want to know what is causing this condition so if possible I can have it treated. Thank you in advance
Tags: Carac
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Avatar_n_tn
I think we have similar symptoms: Here is my story.....Please read and let me know what you think. Also, if you are having digestive problems..have you been tested for Carcinoid syndrome..that can cause facial flushing..I think the test is called 5-HIAA? How long have you been on the Omeprezole? Have you been tested for food allergies..wheat, gluten, sulfites etc? Lupus? Thyroid? Porphyrias? Have you ever used Efudex or Carac cream for pre-skin cancers or any other Rx with flourouracil (AKA 5FU)? I don't think you have Rosacea.

I really need your help.The symptoms described below began in Feb 08. As yet, there has been no conclusive diagnosis and the ailment is impacting every part of my personal and professional life. I have been to 50+MD's and the Mayo Clinic in FL 5 times. Please send me any information/suggestions that may help identify and treat this condition, and also kindly forward this email this to others. I know a cure is out there! Thanks for helping me get my life back.
(age44, white female, engineer, no meds, excellent health until 2/08, non-smoker, no alcohol)
Severe painful burning, facial flushing began mid Feb, became debilitating in May. Frequent, 20-30xday,extremely painful burning, red, slight swelling, facial flushing mainly on cheeks, sometimes nose, forehead or ear, not always symmetric, sometimes random area on face 1-3”diameter. Burning sensation feels as if a hot iron is pressed on my skin and is unbearable. Flushed area is hot to the touch, doesn’t perspire. Symptoms triggered by: lying down(I sleep sitting up),bending over, tilting head, warm place(74+),lack of air circulation, humidity, physical exertion, emotion, spicy food,hot food/drink, hot shower, sunlight, bright artificial light, computer/TV screen. Symptoms occur sometimes w/o trigger. Painful symptoms wake me up every 2-3 hours at night. Flushing is only relieved by pouring cold water over area, blowing with a handheld fan and eliminating the trigger. It takes 20-60min to relieve. Often 1or2  cheeks will stay red, slightly swollen and burning most of the day.I am confined to my dark home since June-as walking outside in heat, daylight, evening humidity, in a car in daylight triggers, immediate very painful facial flushing. I’m unable to go into stores, offices etc, I react to bright lighting, and lack of air circulation. Even in my cool dark home, I put cool water on my face every 20-30 minutes to relieve burning. I am unable to work as my profession requires work on the computer and outdoors. Often with the facial flush the rest of my body (hands, feet) is cold. Symptoms began 2 weeks after completing Carac fluorouracil cream treatment on nose for AK precancer lesion.

Thank you so much.
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Avatar_n_tn
Rose, so sorry you have not been able to come up with an answer for your issues. I just wish the medical community would be able to take a case like ours and see it through until there is an answer. I am sure you feel the same frustration as I do. I am sure you would give about anything to make the condition go away.

To answer your questions, my doctor told me I had about every blood test he is aware of, my medical bills sure reflect that. Not sure how they test for Carcinoid Syndrome, but I will ask. I have been on the Omeprezole & other associated medications for about 8 years and as far as I know I have not been tested for the others. I have not been tested for allergies but will look into it. I have tried the Efudex but that does not seem to help.

My conditions do not seem as severe as yours. I don't have any issues sleeping or working. I do however have some of the same triggering mechanisms which include; lack of air movement, hot or stuffy areas, stress, alcohol (1 beer), Sometimes this feeling comes out of nowhere. It can last an hour or two, sometime when it seems to last hours. My face does become hot to the touch, sometimes I even feel a tingling sensation. Like you, many times my toes and fingers are cold when this happens - I even get chilled. Like you, cool air or cold water helps the condition. Even putting my cool hands on my cheeks seems to help a bit. I have not been treated for skin cancer.

It sounds like you are really suffering with this condition. If I should find any answers I will share them with you. Good luck!
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi, Any update to your situation ?
I am have been having issues for the last few months and was curious to see how you are doing
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Avatar_n_tn
No, nothing new at all. I guess I have learned to live with it. I just wish there was a doctor somewhere who would recognize the problem and offer a solution.

Sorry I could not help. If you come up with anything I would appreicate some feedback.

Thanks
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Avatar_n_tn
I have just started having the same problem.
I am also 51 yr male.Spicy food has always made me flush and sweat.
I am fit play football twice a week, walk every day, blood pressure good
heart beat healthy.
stress ,food and stuffy conditions are my triggers.
Haven't seen a doctor yet but reassuring I am not the only one with
this problem.
Good luck, hope an answer is just round the corner.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same issues. I'm a 35 year old male and this all started around May of this year. The only diagnsis that I've been given is that I have Rosacea, which my dermatologist likes to term as a "cosmetic affliction". Well, if it's so  "cosmetic" why does my face feel hot every afternoon, (with only occassional flare-ups outside of this timeline).

You could certainly try the standard Rosacea treatments to see if they improve your condition, (for me they didn't but they must have helped somebody).
I did have some amount of relief when I had laser treatment for Rosacea, it can be a little pricey but it was worth it. The biggest improvement though has happened since we got back into cooler weather.
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Avatar_f_tn
Any improvement? Did you try going off of the omeprazole? I started taking 40mg dosages per prescription three weeks ago after a 10 day course of nexium and developed a hot/flushed face about the same time that got progressively worse. I'm on day two without it and feel like I've seen some improvemen and I'm sure  the anxiety isn't helping anything. My ENT specialist conceded it could possibly be a side effect. I'm on no other medications, have no fever and my blood pressure is in a normal range. I read it takes 4+ days to get out of your system so I will reevaluate then.
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Avatar_f_tn
hi jlaw
I know this is a very old forum thread but I might have some answers for your flushing.I started with the exact same set of symtems as you. Iv had it for years. Mine are what they call gut allergies but the are exacerbated but stress in my life because it affects my digestive system. I am highly allergic to nuts but only since having children 10 years ago. I also have food intolerances both of with have been tested and confirmed. I don't get the usual anaphylaxis symptoms so when I presented to hospital they could never work it out. I would flush, get tingly, constantly go to the toilet both one and two's my blood pressure would drop which is why I have the flush and my heart would start racing sometimes getting up to 180 bpm. This was a severe case but when I get it only mildly it usually happens at night after I've gone to bed it starts with the flush.
There is a couple of things you can do the first one is work out your food triggers this is hard because it may not be a specific food but rather a food group for example Foods high in salicylates/amines/glutamates.
There has been a few things I have tried over the years to control it but if you need a quick fix while it is happening I've found the best to be a simple antihistamine. The allergy specialist I see told me if I'm having a severe reaction I can take up to 6 but for what you have described one or two should be enough if you find that it isn't settling down you could try taking Half a Xanax or Valium because it is affecting the nervous system
The best long-term solution I have found is first identifying the foods you can't eat and and taking something like Lexapro. It was hard to believe that I needed Lexapro as I do not suffer from depression or anxiety in any other form. the allergy specialist put me on it purely to calm down my nervous system which is what causes all the symptoms I hope that you had already found the answer to your problem but if not I hope this helps.
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