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Fleshy Plugs Under Skin In Pores on Face

there is a spot on my nose that i've rubbed raw washing, trying to get these "things" out of my pores.  these are not whiteheads, nor blackheads.  these are clusters of white or fleshy hard and sticky plugs-- not filled with anything, but they stick straight out from the pores. They are not bumps.  If I rub the area w/ a towel they do not rub off at all.  I tried to remove one with tweezers, and it was very tacky (as in sticky)  and clearly goes deep under the skin.  Part of it broke off but I could still see that the pore was plugged and a day or two later top of the plug was sticking out again. i can't find ANYTHING online that looks like it.  
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12332042 tn?1426088913
I've read nearly every post, and yet there is still no diagnosis or cure for the original poster's condition? I'm 41 and I've had this condition since I was 16.

I have to roll my eyes at everyone posting what they believe the problem is, as if they can solving and wrap-up a life-long debilitating problem that easily.

So to summarize:

The original poster talks of a white rubbery plug rooted deep in the middle of problematic acne-type sores. These lesions don't heal until this plug is pulled out (it never comes out naturally).

They aren't mites. The plugs are about 10 times larger than the largest skin mite that I've seen pictures of.

They aren't ringworm. The pictures I've seen of ringworm look nothing whatsoever like the sores caused by the large white plug roots.

They aren't Cysts. They don't contain liquid - they are solid and rubbery. They CAUSE cysts though, if not removed at the root.

They aren't sebaceous plugs. They are strongly ROOTED deep in the pours and stretch like rubber if you clasp one with tweezers or between fingernails. Crystallized sebum isn't rubbery and doesn't stretch, but there is usually solidified sebum plugging the surface of the pour which has one of these white rubbery plugs.

It's not morgellons. The plugs are bulbous, not like fibers.

It's not a staph infection. Although, the inflammation it causes can lead to staph.

It could be a fungus. It certainly looks like a miniature mushroom of sorts. It grows back again and again like a plant or bacterial mass. However, I don't personally suffer from any fungal problem anywhere else.

It could be a wart. It's certainly wart-like, and wart treatments are very effective. Going deep into the skin to root it out seems like the only effective way to heal the skin.

In the 25 years I've been trying to fix this social-life-disabling pain-in-the-backside, I have tried various solutions. Diets, topical solutions, vitamins, herbs, teas, voodoo, rain dances, you-name-it!

There is no medical name yet for this condition - don't even try to diagnose it using Google - you can't - I've been trying for the past 10 years.

Yes, I'm a picker. Picking is a symptom of this condition, not the cause. Remove the picking and you still have a problem - for better or worse.

I'm impressed at the lengths some of the posters have gone into researching this, especially JG4846. Hoever, JG4846, it sounds like you have a different condition.

Someone needs to remove one of these rubbery white plugs and examine them in a microscope. They are the size of a small grain of rice. If you're lucky enough to get the very root out, the root has a fish-like tail, as if to suggest it was sitting at the very base of a hair follicle and occupying both the hair root and sebaceous gland. Maybe if the plug is a parasite, it is feeding from sebum?

If left alone, they can rest under the skin for weeks, growing slowly until they eventually cause inflammation which leads to a cyst or a pustule. If you're lucky they will grow big enough until they start to push their way to the surface and look like a whitehead. They will continue to grow under the skin until the skin is broken. Usually there is no puss, or "plaque", or liquid of any kind. It's a dry rubbery long bulb which can is easy to pull at at this stage. It will grow back within days though, which is the biggest problem, as it will sit under the scab indefinitely until it's removed again. Eventually the grow-back slows down enough to let it heal until a couple of weeks later it grows back to the surface. They seem to be worse where there is hair, around the mouth, even on the back of my head and neck.

Stress does make it worse. What is the body producing when stressed that these plugs like so much?

The only thing I've found helpful so far is nettle soap. It calms the inflammation down. I leave the lather on my skin to dry. It's especially good after I've had a picking session.

Hopefully this information will add to the melting pot and someone can help find a solution.
Helpful - 7
8 Comments
Nice summary.  My diagnosis: A species of pox virus, most likely molluscum contagiosum.  
:) agreed...
Here is my advice take 6 drops of each of theses oils three times a day in a glass of water,clove,cinnamon,rosemary,red thime,lemon,oregano this is the only cure,trust me it works to kill morgellions
A good c,silver of at least 5000pm will help but the only real cure is the oils I had this stuff for 4 years and the oils are the only thing that will stop it
Thank you! AnTMaNUK, this condition is awful. I have had it since I was twenty six and now Im 60. tried everything.  had dermatologist cut the whole thing off my neck once and they could not figure out what it was!! But he said he had to cut really deep. Once in a while I am clear, but not often. And it never heals till all the spikes are removed.
Brilliant summary, this is exactly the condition I have. I might add that mine is primarily located on the nose and inner cheek (butterfly area) and is accompanied by a red rash. You described the grainy white plugs perfectly, and I agree that all other explanations seem off. I want to add some wood to the fire in hopes of furthering progress on this enterprise.

Information possibly relevant to the condition:

- Autoimmune disease/any immune problem (I have Crohn's disease and take immune suppressing drugs)

- I first had seborrheic dermatitis but it went away with zinc pyrithione (but I still have it on scalp). The condition may be related to seborrheic dermatitis, but I am unsure how. Maybe a different strain or something.

- The condition started during/after I was in the hospital for viral meningitis which I find suspicious (perhaps something in the hospital?).

- I was also coming off of many antibiotics and this may have played some role, but again I am unsure.

- It first became noticeable through inflammation as it formed a malar (butterfly) rash on my face. I looked closer and found these grainy white plugs in almost every pore.

- Excess sebum seems to make it worse (more inflamed)

- You mention not seeing fungus elsewhere on your body, I actually have developed early stages of toe fungus. This could possibly be linked. I have also tried a candida cleanse (intestinal fungi) which has only produced minor results.

- I have it fairly under control, but certainly not cured, with the acne.org regimen (benzoyl peroxide) which cleans out the pores. I have also started wiping my face down with apple cider vinegar to see if it has to do with malasezzia. This has reduced the growth of the plugs but they still persists. The redness also is still there. I am on accutane as well for acne elsewhere, but I will see if that makes any difference.

- It has had a profoundly negative impact on my life, particularly socially. Any help would be greatly appreciated, this **** makes me depressed as hell. I just don't understand what is causing it, all I want is normal skin.
I have had this for the last year and a half and all I get from my dr is antibiotic ointment and a firm "stop picking at them"! So I finally got me a microscope and took a look at these fleshy plugs. The only thing I can match up to as being the same as what I see under the microscope is ringworm fungus! Yes I believe it is definitely ringworm fungus BUT it seems to survive ringworm fungus creams! I think it is a very resistant ringworm fungus and it may take internal anti fungal medicine strong enough to attack it from the inside as you put a topical on also! Now why can't my Dr do what I asked and scrape or pick a piece off and look at it under a microscope like I did so she will believe me!! I even took photos but she thinks I am ……… I don't know what she thinks but I am am tired of not being believed! Dr's need to understand that not everyone is a  hypochondriac and may be smart enough to actually research and figure it out because nobody knows your body like you and the Dr's need to listen to make a proper assessment! Also it makes sense that BRANDDD gets results with apple cider vinegar because that changes the PH and will inhibit growth.
Finally! It has taken me FOREVER to find a discussion with information that describes EXACTLY what I have been going through for YEARS! Now to find out what it really is.
Avatar universal
I feel the frustration & pain that I hear in this discussion forum. For the past 10 years or so, I have been plagued with places on my face, typically my chin starting as a raised bump. I try leaving it alone, but after a few days the raised spot feels tingly & alive (for lack of a better word). Finally, I can stand it no longer, I will pick at the bump. Note, even if I leave the bump alone, it continues to tingle, get more raised & grow. When I remove the top layer of skin, I can see one or more white tipped kernel looking things. Sometimes, I get lucky, & I can pull the enitre plug out with tweezers. It seems to get stuck then finally pull out (very gratifying). The spot fills with blood with a woosh. If the plug is removed, it heals right up. However, more often than not,  I either can not grasp the little sucker at all, or it breaks off. A thin scab will form over the now worsening sore, but the spot is not healing. When I remove the scab later, there is typically more little white plugs. Until I remove all of the little suckers, the spot remains irritated & the thin scab layer covers the wire plugs. I started going to forums, and researching.

I believe, in my case, a demodex infestation is the culprit. Demodex are mites found on naturally on human skin, in particular the face (there are two kinds, one that is more prominent on the eye lids and eye are, and one that is more prominent on the face). After my research, I do believe that yeast (candida)  being out of wack plays a role in the over population of the demodex.  Perhaps giving a more yummy feeding ground for the demodex, thus creating an over population (total hypothesis). Also, I have rosacea, and I believe this lends to an environment that is favorable for demodex (https://www.rosacea.org/patients/demodex).

Demodex do not have an anus, so when they die, they leave all of the waste to decompose in our skin. Everyone has demodex, but an overpopulation, and perhaps an allergic reaction leads to the initial outbreak. The demodex have a short life cycle (two to three weeks) in which they lay eggs for the next generation. I do not know exactly what the white plugs are, but in my case, I believe the culprit is the demodex.

After research, I am trying a paste created out of:
1. Nu Stock (a vet quality product with a sulfer base) which can be bought on Amazon for $12.00
2. 100% Tea Tree Oil which can be bought on Amazon for $7.00
3. Zinc Oxide which I will buy locally.
The paste is equal parts NuStock, and Zinc Oxide, with a little bit of Tea Tree Oil.
Also, I have ordered the Dermodex shampoo, Dermodex facial wash, and Dermodex body lotion. All three can be bought on Amazon (not cheap). All products have essential oils and ingredients which will kill the demodex.
From my research, it seems the demodex shy away from light, and come out of the skin at night. So, I plan on applying the NuStock, Tea Tree Oil, and ZInc Oxide paste on at bedtime, and removing in the am. Also, the same will hold true for the shampoo, facial wash, and body lotion that I plan on following up with.  Additionally, I am on the way the heath food store now for a quality probiotic to insure my candida (yeast) is in balance.

Last night, I put 20% tea tree oil that I had at home, and diaper rash cream (zinc oxide) on to a lesion on my right cheek. A hoard of white plugs began surfacing in the area. I was able to easily pull out five to six of the plugs. I could feel the spot itching, and tingling during the night. Today, the spot is almost totally gone! I am hopeful that with the regime described above, I will be able to eradicate my demodex infestation, along with the horrible sores left in their wake.

I really feel for everyone experiencing outbreaks on their face that seem to be incurable. I know my self esteem has been impacted, and also a sense of shame for picking at my face. And, feeling that I am being dismissed by the medical profession. I know everyone may have varying issues, and no one cure fits all. I do believe, that the demodex seems to be the issue. I will update once I have tried the above.
Helpful - 4
3 Comments
Okay, I changed my course of action (I will return the NuStock, and Dermodex products (about $65.00). After reading one of the post on this thread, I researched ivermectin paste. The FDA has approved ivermectin 1% topical for rosace. Also, the role of  demodex mites in rosace was referenced. On Amazon, I ordered a vet quality ivermectin 1.75% for horses ($5.99), which I will apply this evening. I do believe the NuStock is a viable option, but I am allergic to sulfa and this seemed risky. Also, the Nustock smells terrible, and I would have to mix the tea tree oil, and zinc. Thus, a little smellier, costlier, time to mix, and allergy sensitivity. I just received an e-mail notice that the Horse Health Ivermectin will be delivered this evening. I am more hopeful than I have been in my journey thus far. I will update!
Here is the journal article discussing rosace, demodex, and treatment with ivermectin: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26020066
I had all these symptoms...still do! And then i thought it was demodex and they were in my mouth.. then i thought thrush.. then one day i was peeing and noticed what looked like rolled up thread and its threadworms and or pinworms... it all has to do with yeast!
Avatar universal
I will spare everyone the details of my four-year journey with this problem. After trying everything and spending thousands of dollars (no lie), my remedy came in the form of Minocycline (50mg) twice a day. The plugs dried up and could be pulled out. Additionally, laser hair removal on my face removed the tiny, nearly invisible hairs to which these "plugs" clung. Spend the money now for these two things. They will save frustration, time, and additional money in the future.
Helpful - 4
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Thanks for the info! I have doxycycline to take, I wonder if it would have the same effect as Minocycline? Also if you don't mind me asking what color were your facial hairs? Mine are very light blonde so I am afraid laser hair removal wouldn't work on them.
Avatar universal
Just want to share my experience in hopes that it might help someone. I've experienced all of the same things everyone is describing: stretchy white plugs that are rooted and can only be pulled out with tweezers. I'm on my 3rd dermatologist, and I think this one has finally figured it out. The 1st two dermatologists blamed me - said it was my picking and more or less called me crazy. The 2nd dermatologist was a good one, and tried very hard to help me, but after a couple of years you could tell he finally got frustrated with me. The 3rd dermatologist, the one I'm seeing now, knew right away what the problem was. For me, it's because my body doesn't know how to metabolize some types of medications. The medication that caused my problem was Zoloft. Since my body doesn't know how to metabolize the medication, it gets rid of it through my skin via hair follicles. This is what is causing the stretchy white plugs for me, it's the medication that cannot be metabolized by my body coming out through my hair follicles. Since it comes out through the hair follicles, it's also causing the hair produced by these follicles to be abnormal. In addition to the stretchy white plugs, I was also pulling out super-fine hairy things. These super-fine hairy things is hair that has abnormally formed by these hair follicles and is growing under the skin. Anyway, I was super nervous about coming off the Zoloft, and don't encourage anyone to do it without talking to their doctor first, but I gradually stepped off of it over a 2 month period and have been off of it for 7 months now. I would say that my skin is 80% better. Most of the lesions have healed up, but have left some bad scars. The dermatologist said that it could take up to a year to undo all of the damage that has been done. I still have a ways to go, and I still have some stubborn lesions that have been there for years (there's one on my arm that I've had for 4 years), but things are slowly getting better. The diagnosis that she puts on my office visits is Prurigo Nodularis, but from talking to her, it's more than just that. The current treatment she has me on is to take an over-the-counter probiotic everyday (to help encourage the reopening of the enzyme pathways for metabolizing - her words, not mine), a Rx for Spironolactone 50 mg once a day, and she just recently added a Rx for Metformin 250 mg once a day. I feel for all of you (and for me too), it's so hard to deal with something like this especially when doctors write us off and basically blame us for picking. I feel so fortunate that I have finally found a dermatologist who both understands what I am going through, and seems to understand what is going on with my body and what is causing these lesions.
Helpful - 3
2 Comments
Did your dr tell you what the condition is that was causing you to not metabolize medicine correctly? I have many of the same skin issues as you mentioned and I too have not found anything that looks like it on the web. I have rosacea but am concerned about a yeast overgrowth and demodex also. Can you update on how the new treatment worked for you?
Omg this sounds exactly like what I have!!! I thought I was losing it! Like the never ending stupid zit! They last FOREVER! Just when I think it’s gojng away it’s back like it heals on top, then I can feel the pressure building in the evenings. (On end of nose of course)and a mixture of clear, and or blood comes out. It’s so frustrating I never had acne and now I’m damn near 40 with this terrible crap on my face
Avatar universal
These plugs are parasites. DO NOT LET ANYONE CONVINCE YOUR OTHERWISE …and believe me, they’ll try (ill-informed dermatologists included). The parasites are called Demodex mites. That plug is the adult stage of the mite. Usually, humans are only inhabited by Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis. I suspect you’re describing the Demodex injai, the "large-body" Demodex. You'll want to get rid of these things ASAP and with extreme prejudice. I wound up with an all-out infestation because it took me 7 years, 5 useless dermatologists, and 2 ill-equipped primary care physicians to figure it out. One dermatologist accused me of making the sores myself and suggested I take an anti-depressant. But, don't get me started on that... I even had an elevated IGg because my system was so irritated by them. Anyway, back to the mites …The adults move around on your skin (usually at night because they don’t like light) and give you an itchy, crawly sensation. After they mate, the pregnant female emerges to lays eggs. When the pregnant female comes out, it looks kind of like a regular pimple. But, no puss comes out it-only fluid- and it gets red and irritated if you mess with it. The eggs she lays around the area where she emerged, that look kind of like "spindles." They’re down inside your skin but have little white hairs sticking out of your pores. Those hairs get a little thicker and will sometimes fall out as the egg evolves into an adult mite. Don’t bother pulling them out. The hairs will simply detach and the mite will stay in your pore. The adult mites are NOTHING NICE. They have, what I call venom (for lack of a better word), that causes a sever immune response. If you mess with them, they create this clear fluid that makes a hole in your skin. If you persist, they will make you bleed profusely. I think that stuff is an anti-coagulant too! After you lose the battle (and you will), your skin feels like it's on FIRE. Depending upon how much you messed with them, you'll either have a sore spot that won't heal or a plasticky quasi-scab looking thing …on top of a sore that won’t heal. If you lift up the plasticky scab, you can see the adult mites attached to the underside of it. I say that to say this: DON’T BOTHER MESSING WITH THEM. You will not get them out without putting a deep hole in your skin. They just dig down deeper if you try to pull them out with tweezers. The immune response will make a real mess of your face. You cannot kill the adult Demodex with creams because they move down into your pores beyond the reach of topical miticides. You cannot kill adult Demodex with ingested miticides because they have a hard outer shell that protects them from absorbing the chemicals. If you pinch one of those white plugs really hard with some tweezers you can hear it crunch. (I even tried applying a tiny bit of RAID …didn’t work.) I got rid of the MF’ers with 3 things: (1) Ivermectin, (2) Permethrin SFR, and (3) sulfur paste (all of which I found at the local feed store for animals). First: Use Ivermectin to kill the mid-stage mites. I used the equine version. It’s a paste with 1.87% Ivermectin. (DO THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK. IVERMECTIN DOSES ARE DETERMINED BY WEIGHT. I SIMPLY USED THE APPROPRIATE AMOUNT OF PASTE FOR MY WEIGHT. I HAD NO PROBLEMS AT ALL, BUT BE CAREFUL). Within 6-8 hours of your first dose of Ivermectin, you'll see the mites pushing out of your pores IN DROVES. Because it only kills the mid-stage mites (not eggs or adults), you’ll need to take Ivermectin once a week, for 4-6 weeks. When you take the Ivermectin, change your bed sheets every night, for at least three nights. Also, buy a few extra pillow cases so you can have a newly washed pillow case every night for at least four weeks. I STRONGLY suggest this measure because the mites wreaked havoc on my scalp. My hair has not grown for more than 3 years. You may want to use Selson Blue shampoo for 4 to 6 weeks, just in case. Second: Use Permethrin SFR, which is 38.6 % Permethrin, to kill the eggs. Dilute it in a spray bottle and spray EVERYTHING in your house, including mattresses, couches, carpets, etc. …EVERYTHING. Then, vacuum really good, and spray EVERYTHING again. Buy new pillows too. Wash ALL CLOTHING and LINENS in hot water. Put them in the dryer on “high heat.” I even lightly sprayed the Permethrin solution on the dried laundry, and the replaced bed sheets. Permethren is not really toxic to humans, and it’s odorless once it dries (PLEASE READ THE PACKAGING THOROUGLY). WHILE I DON’T RECOMMEND THIS: I poured ¾ cup of the Permethrin SFR in my bath water. After soaking for a short time, there were so many eggs (with the white hairs) that my bath water had a film on it. I only did this because I had a full-on infestation. Third: Apply the sulfur paste all over your body. It’s a little tricky to apply, so I suggest wearing gloves. Also, it’s really thick and has a strong smell. I used Pierce’s All Purpose Nu-Stock. I had to mix the paste with baby oil to get it to spread. You’re supposed to wear it, kind of like calamine lotion, for 3 days straight. Then re-apply, on top of the first application, and wear for another 3 days. The objective is to keep the adult mites from mating and laying new eggs. I realize this is a lot. But, BELIEVE ME, you do not want to be infested with these things. This has been a 7-year nightmare for me …finally coming to an end. Good luck!
Helpful - 3
3 Comments
Did this get rid of them ?
Here is my advice take 6 drops of each of theses oils three times a day in a glass of water,clove,cinnamon,rosemary,red thime,lemon,oregano this is the only cure,trust me it works to kill morgellions
sp11969 ~ what are the details?  How long did you have a problem, how long did it take to work and how permanently was it defeated?  

Not an unpleasant or difficult treatment.  And, lets hear the story.
Avatar universal
This may seem like an odd question, but do you have gasto-intestinal issues as well (cramping, constipation/diareah, mucous in stool, etc)? If so, you may be suffering from a fungal infection. I'd been getting progressively sicker over the past few years and none of the many specialists I went to could figure out the cause of my MANY symptoms (broad range, developed over time so they seemed unrelated). After doing my own research, I discovered I had severe yeast (candida albicans) overgrowth in my digestive tract & lungs, which made me susceptible to other fungal infections, including aspergillus which caused white sacks/spikes rooted deep in my skin to pop up on my ears, face, neck, thighs & chest. Topical Over The Counter (OTC) antifungal creams helped a little, but I found treating from the inside out by killing the fungus and boosting my immune system was the best approach. I highly recommend  Syntol by Andrew Arthur Medical to everyone fighting a fungal infection as it's an oral supplement containing many yeast digesting enzymes in addition to multiple strains of probiotic spores (spore germination = better  recolonization of good bacteria). Syntol can be purchased online and in select health stores like The Vitamin Shoppe). Oddly enough, the product I found to work BEST topically is a nasal wash I found at Walgreens called ALKALOL. It contains essential oils known for their antimicrobial  properties so i decided to apply it to my skin by saturating cotton rounds and applying it like you would a facial toner. This magical liquid did more for my skin in one day than the typical OTC antifungals had done in months (yes, MONTHS). I even pour some in my bath along with organic coconut oil (another antifungal) and Epsom salt (replaces magnesium in the body and eases discomfort by drawing out toxins).

Below is a link to the Candida Questionnaire developed by Dr. Crook which can help you determine if yeast or other fungi are negatively affecting your health. 
  http://www.flora-balance.com/candida_questionnaire_long.php
Helpful - 3
Avatar universal
It could be a rare fungus created by your own mycotoxin or by someone elses.  Coconut oil, bha, vitamin c serum, even putting lemon on your skin w/water on a paper towel it absorbs whatever resilient toxin that is nesting
Helpful - 2
3 Comments
What treatment would you suggest if a yeast overgrowth is the fungal issue? Or demodex? What you said makes perfect sense if it is in fact, a toxin of some sort, which would make sense in his case and mine possibly. Any advice is appreciated
I had all these symptoms...still do! And then i thought it was demodex and they were in my mouth.. then i thought thrush.. then one day i was peeing and noticed what looked like rolled up thread and its threadworms and or pinworms... it all has to do with yeast!
Itchysrus Can you please go into more detail about knowing its yeast?  Why do you know that?  Did you get rid of the problem, and what did you use?  
Avatar universal
I've found an interesting article. Might be related to our problem.

"Herpetic Folliculitis and Syringitis
Simulating Acne Excoriee


We describe the case of a 46-year-old woman with a long standing history of acne excoriee, confirmed by several
dermatologists, that finally was unmasked as herpetic fol-
liculitis and syringitis.

Report of a Case.

A 46-year-old, white, nonatopic woman who had not suffered from severe acne vulgaris in puberty developed acneiform lesions on her face at age 25 years.
Subjective symptoms like palpitation, burning, and itch-
ing made her pick and squeeze these lesions. Numerous
recurrences over the next 20 years led to considerable scar
formation. The “acne lesions” had resisted the acne treat-
ment advised by several dermatologists. Because of her skin lesions, she was in deteriorating psychological condition that seemed to support a diagnosis of acne excoriee.

When treatment for acne was again ineffective, a
5-mm punch biopsy was performed on demand of the
patient.

Serological testing by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay detected IgM and IgG antibodies to HSV.

Comment.
Over a period of 20 years, our patient suf-
fered from recurrent episodes of acneiform lesions on
the face clinically resembling acne excoriee. Herpesvirus folliculitis and syringitis was diagnosed only by his-
topathologic examination. The diagnosis of HSV infec-
tion was confirmed by polymerase chain reaction
amplification of HSV DNA, by detection of HSV-specific
antibodies using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay,
and by the positive response to antiviral therapy with
valacyclovir.

In herpesvirus infection of the skin, the histopathologic changes are often limited to the epidermis. Remarkably, the involvement of the follicular epithelia (herpetic folliculitis) and the sebaceous and eccrine
structures (herpetic syringitis)
is only rarely reported in the literature.

In conclusion, herpetic folliculitis and syringitis should be considered relevant differential diagnoses
in patients with acneiform lesions that fail to respond to
conventional acne treatment."
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12332042 tn?1426088913
Don't buy branded chemical soups. I get them from eBay where there are a lot of sellers who make soaps naturally. Buy soap made using the cold-pressed method. Seller's by law need to have their product cleared by the industry regulators and have to identify the ingredients used. This soap is by far better than anything you'll find on the shelf in a supermarket. Avoid chemicals. It's also better to support independent crafts this way. I didn't bat an eyelid at the price because anything that helps this problem is priceless.

I've also purchased some 10% Sulphur, 3% Salicylic acid soap recently. This doesn't calm the inflammation, but it helps to bring the debris under the skin to the surface and hardens it. It helps reduce the need to dig deeper into the flesh to fish it out. So I will wash with this, leave the lather to dry and soak into the skin. Then later I will wash it off - pick gunk out if I have to, then wash with nettle soap and let the lather dry - this is the best thing that's helped me so far. It prevents my skin from cracking, and calms the redness, and, after a while, it leaves a good base for any concealer you have to use.

Neat tea tree seems to have a similar affect to this soap. Causes inflammation though. So, like the soap, it can cause a break-out - which is inevitable anyway.

I think one other thing that can help a lot is limiting the damage you do to the epidermis trying to remove the offending white debris from deep within the dermis. Damage around the area is unnecessary if you can get deep enough to pluck the stuff out, or you're lucky enough to be able to grasp it at the surface to pull it out at the root without it breaking. I use my fingernails rather than tweezers - it gives a much better grip. Fingernail hygiene is a must if you do this. Another thing I use is a narrow-bladed scalpel which is useful for getting down into a pour/duct and plucking at the root of it.

So to clarify: If you're strong-willed enough to resist picking, the problem doesn't go away. A problem area will swell and swell until the inflammation causes a painful cyst or pustule. You can clean this up and it will never heal until you clean it up and then remove the white rubbery root thing that caused it in the first place - it never goes away without manual intervention. After over 25 years of trying different things, self-surgery is still the only solution so far. Even then, it will grow back again in a week or month. So, try to reduce the damage you do (I understand how picking can become a frenzy - try to do it with surgical precision), and calm the skin down with anti-inflammatory.

I'm experimenting with diets. I'm eating more fruit, drinking more water, cutting down on sugar, gluten, meat. It's made NO DIFFERENCE whatsoever.

I think I'm a lot more fortunate than a lot of people suffering with this problem. I am lucky that my skin heals very quickly and doesn't scar. And I've become a master at using concealer. So, unless it's really really bad, I can still manage to hide the problem enough to feel okay about leaving the front door. It's not ideal, but at least I can sort-of lead a normal life. If I could give any one of you anything from this, I would give you the confidence to go out and face the world and look people in the eye when you talk to them...

I still live in hope that someone will diagnose this and cure it. Until then, there's a whole bunch of know-it-alls that believe we're simply deluded and picking at imaginary stuff under the skin.
Helpful - 2
Avatar universal
Sorry for the additional posts, but I forgot to mention that applying plain yogurt to the skin (like a facial cream treatment) also helped me. Note: the yogurt must contain live active cultures and NO fruit or added sugars as many fungi thrive on sugar/carbs.
Helpful - 2
Avatar universal
FYI I also recommend Dr. Bronner's Tea Tree liquid soap (one with the orange label) as it contains antimocrobial essential oils (does not clog pores or leave skin oily). Avoiding sugar & antibiotics was also key for me. I hope this helps!
Helpful - 2
Avatar universal
These are enlarged sebaceous glands.  I get these all the time underneath any pimple I get.  The pimple comes back until I dig out the "bulb" deep under it.  I showed a dermatologist what I was doing, and she said I am pulling out the actual sebaceous glands!  This is self-surgery, and very dangerous.  Spirano-Lactone is a wonderful drug for calming this condition.
Helpful - 2
1 Comments
Spironolactone is a diuretic.  You are treating yourself for inflammation?  

Inflammation causes literally every disease [almost.]   A recent bit of research indicates that you can treat inflammation by increasing the Luteolin in your diet.  This is an EASY thing to do if you just add some herbs to your diet:  [Mexican] oregano, peppermint, sage, thyme, bell peppers, radicchio, and celery seeds.  Other veg, herbs and a couple of fruits lemon & blueberry.

IN order by wt/value Veg/Fruit:  Radicchio, Green sweet pepper, Green Serrano Pepper, Green Hot Chili Pepper, Chicory Greens, Celery, Lemon, [actual] Pumpkin, red leaf lettuce, artichoke- globe or French, kohlrabi [root], peppers jalapeno, peppers yellow sweet, spinach, broccoli, green leaf lettuce,  cantaloupe, watermelon, peppers red sweet, navel oranges, pink and red grapefruit, kiwi, beets, cabbage pak cho Chinese cabbage savory [bok choy? try baby bok choy], brussels sprouts, lettuce cos or romaine, lotus root, cabbage, cauliflower, blueberries, chives, snap green beans, cabbage red, collards, carrots, sweet potato leaves.  
Avatar universal
90% that's echinococcus granulosus
Helpful - 1
1 Comments
It's not even remotely close to that.
Avatar universal
Sounds like the desease we have, what do you think?

"Granulomatous Skin Infections. Malassezia pachydermatis, a zoophilic species that commonly colonizes dogs, cats, and other small mammals, is a very rare cause of warty papules and plaques on human skin. Histopathology shows hyperkeratosis, acanthosis, follicular dilation, neutrophilic microabscesses, and a mixed dermal infiltrate with multinucleated giant cells. In one case report, treatment was successful with oral fluconazole 200 mg daily for 10 weeks, liquid nitrogen cryotherapy, and oral ciprofloxacin 400 mg daily for 1 week (Fan et al., 2006)."

http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/589255_4
Helpful - 1
Avatar universal
Melanie723, thank you for sharing!
I have very similar symptoms((

Did any dermatologist suggested that might be molluscum contagiosum?

If I try to get that first white plug out (as you described) - it helps sometimes, but if I manage to take the plug out onle partly - the next day I have multiple plugs within the same lesion((

That's why I think that might be molluscum - as it's a contagious infection and can spread within lesion.

And most dermatologists know only classical form of MC.
Helpful - 1
Avatar universal
I have similar symptoms, white plugs often but not always accompanied by pink bumps. I recommend checking out youtube videos of molloscum contagiosum removal to see if it resembles your symptoms.
The videos seem similar to what I'm experiencing, except sometimes there is no raised red bump, only the inner white plug (the molluscum body). In the past I have seen two dermatologists, both of whom said that it was just acne. I was not confident or assertive enought to tell them that I disagreed with that diagnosis at the time, however one doctor prescribed Adapalene, which is a peeling agent coincidentally also sometimes used to control Molluscum. The Adapelene reduces the length of time the bumps stay on my face significantly, from over a month to about one week, but it hasn't made them all go away. Now I plan to go back and tell the doctor believe I have MC and I want it gone, and I'm not going to settle for another acne diagnosis.
I have been very grateful for this conversation while dealing with this issue. Made me feel much less alone. Thank you.
Helpful - 1
Avatar universal
Luna2552, I did not have any hair removal treatments prior to my accumulation of this weird ailment we all seem to share. I was just 14 years old, and thought it was acne - just as everyone thought it was and thought that I was picking my face! I still have to tell my parents that I do not touch my face & if I do, then it's only because I HAVE to get this little ball out or else it spreads. The ball doesn't spread.. the sore/lesion does, bringing more balls to the surface usually.

In fact, I've never had any hair treatment done. But I have had bouts of folliculitis. & right after I wrote my first post in this forum, I had my first experience with alopecia areata - August 24, 2015 so I'm still dealing with that and trying to get it under control. I'm wondering if it has anything to do with my last flare up the week before I noticed the bald spot. It is an autoimmune disease. Despite my steroids and probiotic injections for alopecia, my face started peeling again at the recent scars and I had to get back on to my 100mg doxycycline. The only thing that works to keep these white things away is being on an antibiotic constantly. It is such a drag for my immune system!

I am trying to get insurance to pay for Oracea again. It's a mild, daily antibiotic and it kept my face so clear. I still haven't been able to find out how it works exactly.. I was trying to find out so maybe I could find natural alternatives. Even with me using zinc/antibiotic topicals, fungal topicals, and colloidal silver, my skin did not stay clear. They help heal faster when in combination with the antibiotics, but not without it.
Helpful - 1
Avatar universal
Sorry others have the same stuff I do. I just turned 41 and have had these issues forever. They start out with a little burning and itching, grow into a red lump, and will not pop like a normal pimple. Of course after washing and messing with them, they always open into a sore and there they are... the white things The sores will not heal until all the white things are pulled out (usually with tweezers). When I finally went to the dermatoligists and told her this she looked at me like I was crazy. She could not tell me what they are and how to get rid of them. This last time I was sick when I broke up in several on the neck, face, & chest. The derm said I had folliculits and staph infection (probably from the open wounds). She said to leave the white things alone, that they would work themselves out on their own.. Basically she told me I was like a picker to feel the need to pull the white things out.. Of course I did not believe it. She told me to mess with one like normal and let one heal on its own as an experment. It bothered me so bad to not pull those white things out to hurry the healing as i feel so gross with the sores. I hate that she was right, but the 2nd sore I left alone healed faster. Day after day I could see the white things migrating up and out of the sore when I washed it. I kept it very clean and covered it with the little round bandaids. The reason I am sharing this is I have no answers to what they are, but I do know it makes us prone to staph infection with the open sores and trust me, it *****. They are so irratating, and were almost impossible for me to resist getting my faitful tweezers out and pulling at the white things. Those little round band aids help a lot :) If anyone learns anything new to help this, please let me know as i was given no info on how to prevent this.
Helpful - 1
2 Comments
FOLLICULITIS. That's GOT to be IT!! I get these on my forearms (in my 40's). When you bother them or pick at them, and create an open wound, they are always an almost perfectly circular sore around the hair follicle. And yes, the white hard cyst-like thing is right exactly in the middle, in the pore. Strangely, they do itch a little sometimes (like a minor mosquito bite would), like it WANTS you to pick at it. Thanks for your reply comment, Dutchy1971 (I'm 1970, btw). It helped a lot. So, leaving them alone will help heal faster? And they come out on their own? I'll try that. And we don't have to worry much that we have some sort of severe life-threatening infection or anything. Right?
FOLLICULITIS. That's GOT to be IT!! I get these on my forearms (in my 40's). When you bother them or pick at them, and create an open wound, they are always an almost perfectly circular sore around the hair follicle. And yes, the white hard cyst-like thing is right exactly in the middle, in the pore. Strangely, they do itch a little sometimes (like a minor mosquito bite would), like it WANTS you to pick at it. Thanks for your reply comment, Dutchy1971 (I'm 1970, btw). It helped a lot. So, leaving them alone will help heal faster? And they come out on their own? I'll try that. And we don't have to worry much that we have some sort of severe life-threatening infection or anything. Right?
Avatar universal
Spent 8am to 7pm researching today. Where did it get me? The same place I was at the start of my research, lost, with multiple “maybes”.

I do not think it’s melassezia, candida, keratin, morgellons, etc.

My problem presents itself as a deep pimple or cystic acne usually on the chin, occasionally on the nose. It’s painful, kind of throbbing, sometimes warm to touch. WETHER OR NOT I mess with it does not matter. At some point the top layer of skin will come off  and I’m left with an open sore and behold...white “plugs” underneath. This sore WILL NOT go away until the plugs are removed! The sore will leak a clear or yellowish liquid sometimes. It can leak for over 24hrs. Sometimes the sore will have a honeycomb scab look to it, but this “scab” comes off with the slightest touch or movement. Like all others, dermatologist did not helped, I was labeled a picker with adult acne. This issue didn’t start until mid 20’s. I have tried many of the things listed and it does not help or offers minor temporary relief.

Here are the medications I take, as well as my routinely used face products:
Spironolactone 150mg
Tretinoin (small dot 3x a week)
Clindamycin (small dot every morning)
Ketoconazole Shampoo (used as face wash a few times a week)
And now Clotrimazole (foot antifungal, as needed during flairs....this does give me an itchy redness little rash if used too much, I has pretty sensitive skin)

I also use ****** Hydrating Face Wash, and La Rouche Posay Mositurizer. I try not to use anything near the affected area when I have an open flare up of the plugs.

I'm curious if we can all find a common factor?
Why do we all have this issue?
When did it start for you?
Do you find stress affects it for better or worst?
I think figuring out any common factors could help.
Has anyone had a cyst removed or broken bone?

Here is a list of top “maybes” from reading:
Discoid Lupus
Basal cell carcinoma
Squamous cell carcinoma
Actinic Keratosis

And lastly my entire “maybe” list:
Tinea barbae
Staph epi
Impetigo
Staph infection/folliculitis
MRSA
Demodex
Localized cutaneous leishmaniasis
Parasites
Merkel cell carcinoma
Ring worm
Myiasis
•autoimmune?
HPV skin infection

I am currently sitting with tape on my face. Some property in duct tape brings out warts and this won’t hurt to try.

The first bit of information I ever found can be found at this link as well as photos of my issue. (Page 6 username Shoober)

https://www.acne.org/forums/topic/370396-tiny-white-plugs/page/6/
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Spent 8am to 7pm researching today. Where did it get me? The same place I was at the start of my research, lost, with multiple “maybes”.

I do not think it’s melassezia, candida, keratin, morgellons, etc.

My problem presents itself as a deep pimple or cystic acne usually on the chin, occasionally on the nose. It’s painful, kind of throbbing, sometimes warm to touch. WETHER OR NOT I mess with it does not matter. At some point the top layer of skin will come off  and I’m left with an open sore and behold...white “plugs” underneath. This sore WILL NOT go away until the plugs are removed! The sore will leak a clear or yellowish liquid sometimes. It can leak for over 24hrs. Sometimes the sore will have a honeycomb scab look to it, but this “scab” comes off with the slightest touch or movement. Like all others, dermatologist did not helped, I was labeled a picker with adult acne. This issue didn’t start until mid 20’s. I have tried many of the things listed and it does not help or offers minor temporary relief.

Here are the medications I take, as well as my routinely used face products:
Spironolactone 150mg
Tretinoin (small dot 3x a week)
Clindamycin (small dot every morning)
Ketoconazole Shampoo (used as face wash a few times a week)
And now Clotrimazole (foot antifungal, as needed during flairs....this does give me an itchy redness little rash if used too much, I has pretty sensitive skin)

I also use ****** Hydrating Face Wash, and La Rouche Posay Mositurizer. I try not to use anything near the affected area when I have an open flare up of the plugs.

I'm curious if we can all find a common factor?
Why do we all have this issue?
When did it start for you?
Do you find stress affects it for better or worst?
I think figuring out any common factors could help.
Has anyone had a cyst removed or broken bone?

Here is a list of top “maybes” from reading:
Discoid Lupus
Basal cell carcinoma
Squamous cell carcinoma
Actinic Keratosis

And lastly my entire “maybe” list:
Tinea barbae
Staph epi
Impetigo
Staph infection/folliculitis
MRSA
Demodex
Localized cutaneous leishmaniasis
Parasites
Merkel cell carcinoma
Ring worm
Myiasis
•autoimmune?
HPV skin infection

I am currently sitting with tape on my face. Some property in duct tape brings out warts and this won’t hurt to try.

The first bit of information I ever found can be found at this link as well as photos of my issue. (Page 6 username Shoober)

https://www.acne.org/forums/topic/370396-tiny-white-plugs/page/6/
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Spent 8am to 7pm researching today. Where did it get me? The same place I was at the start of my research, lost, with multiple “maybes”.

I do not think it’s melassezia, candida, keratin, morgellons, etc.

My problem presents itself as a deep pimple or cystic acne usually on the chin, occasionally on the nose. It’s painful, kind of throbbing, sometimes warm to touch. WETHER OR NOT I mess with it does not matter. At some point the top layer of skin will come off  and I’m left with an open sore and behold...white “plugs” underneath. This sore WILL NOT go away until the plugs are removed! The sore will leak a clear or yellowish liquid sometimes. It can leak for over 24hrs. Sometimes the sore will have a honeycomb scab look to it, but this “scab” comes off with the slightest touch or movement. Like all others, dermatologist did not helped, I was labeled a picker with adult acne. This issue didn’t start until mid 20’s. I have tried many of the things listed and it does not help or offers minor temporary relief.

Here are the medications I take, as well as my routinely used face products:
Spironolactone 150mg
Tretinoin (small dot 3x a week)
Clindamycin (small dot every morning)
Ketoconazole Shampoo (used as face wash a few times a week)
And now Clotrimazole (foot antifungal, as needed during flairs....this does give me an itchy redness little rash if used too much, I has pretty sensitive skin)

I also use ****** Hydrating Face Wash, and La Rouche Posay Mositurizer. I try not to use anything near the affected area when I have an open flare up of the plugs.

I'm curious if we can all find a common factor?
Why do we all have this issue?
When did it start for you?
Do you find stress affects it for better or worst?
I think figuring out any common factors could help.
Has anyone had a cyst removed or broken bone?

Here is a list of top “maybes” from reading:
Discoid Lupus
Basal cell carcinoma
Squamous cell carcinoma
Actinic Keratosis

And lastly my entire “maybe” list:
Tinea barbae
Staph epi
Impetigo
Staph infection/folliculitis
MRSA
Demodex
Localized cutaneous leishmaniasis
Parasites
Merkel cell carcinoma
Ring worm
Myiasis
•autoimmune?
HPV skin infection

I am currently sitting with tape on my face. Some property in duct tape brings out warts and this won’t hurt to try.

The first bit of information I ever found can be found at this link as well as photos of my issue. (Page 6 username Shoober)

https://www.acne.org/forums/topic/370396-tiny-white-plugs/page/6/
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
I started having this  same problem in my early twenties (I’m now 35) and through the process of elimination I discovered that these breakouts are triggered when I have dairy products with the exception of butter (because it is a fat). I believe that it is the proteins in the dairy causing the problem. I recently took an exlax stimulant to treat a stomach issue but did not realize that it had whey protein in it. I was soo angry. Going on 5 weeks and the last plug is out (I believe). Hope this helps someone.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
havent had one of these in a few years then BAM this week I get what feels like a cystic acne pimple on my nose. Its red sore to the touch. I leave it a lone for a few days trying to dry it out with benzoyl peroxide it looks like its coming to a head (i see white) I squeeze it and white puss comes out but it still feels sore so I know there is still something there. The next day I squeeze again more puss comes out. it feels like its done but the next morning I wake up its sore again and then I see the white plug. All around the plug the top layer of skin is peeled off and the skin seems to close over it if I leave it alone. I squeezed it once more not hard but enough the plug started to peak out of my skin. I could have pulled it out but I have enough deep pitted scars on my nose so i decided to leave it alone. Im ging to leave it alone and keep it dry. Continuing my routine of  benzoyl peroxide and retin a and adding  alittle tea tree oil to the plug. Ive had a couple in the past I left a lone and they went away I just had to keep them dry its tempting to pick them though because they heal much faster when the plug is removed. I'll update make an update soon.

Also i found this forum where people have been describing the same issue
https://www.acne.org/forums/topic/370396-tiny-white-plugs/
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Steps to Remove Hard Callus w/ Fleshy Plugs under in Pores:
1. Soak the area in warm water; usually a nice long hot bath does well...
2. Tear off and remove the Callus surface to expose the deeper flesh area which often times the plug head can be seen...
3. Soak area in Hydrogen-peroxide this will cause the effected Callus area to turn to a soft dead skin white color and easier to remove from the body...
4. Apply Crushed Aspirin to the open wound & cover w/ Band-Aid...

Please note that I also used 2% Mupirocin Ointment for some time with slight results for my long term lesion; results really took place after the application of Aspirin to the open wound...

I repeated this Twice a day for about 3 weeks until all the Hard Callus area was gone and the wound felt and appears to be healing like a normal wound on my body does...
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