ITP does not discrimate when it strikes its next victim. It affects the young and old, rich and poor all over the world. Dealing with this blood disorder is no easy task. The fear and frustration of not knowing where the roller coaster will take us next can be daunting.

This blog is for ITPers to express thoughts, feelings and lessons learned during their ride. Send your post to greta799@yahoo.com. We want to hear from you.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

ITP and Bruises....What Can We do About It?

What do you do when you are about to celebrate one of the happiest days of your life but the bruises associated with ITP cause you to be self-conscious?

Meghan Brewster, like many of us, didn't want her wedding pictures to be spoiled by the tale-tale signs of having ITP and found a way to ease her mind. She wanted to share this information with her fellow ITPers. 

Admit it, we are all embarrassed by the unsightly bruises associated with ITP. When long sleeves and pants are not a solution, this may help.

I have had ITP for 6 years. 

When my partner and I got engaged in January 2013, I started to worry about bruises showing up on the wedding day and in the photos. 

It was stupid.  Nobody else ever notices them as much as me.  Everyone tells me not to worry.  I am embarrassed and point them out to people before they have a chance to say anything, before they notice.  I like to explain straight up that I already know they are there.  

I was diagnosed with ITP in early 2008.  It was all very scary.  I remember trying to keep it all a secret, until I knew what to tell everyone.  Apart from one of my sisters, nobody knew about my trip to the emergency department for the first twelve-ish hours.  Looking back I know I was silly to do that, but at the time it felt like such an unnecessary hassle to keep calling my family and freaking them all out.  I didn’t want anyone to worry for no reason. 

Twenty-four hours later I had a pretty solid diagnosis that was reconfirmed during the week, with every passing test.

A few years ago, I started writing a blog called ITP and Me, which has been a wonderful source of information sharing over the years.  It has allowed me to meet and chat with lots of ITP patients from around the world.  I don’t know anybody else with ITP in my social circles so it has also given me a way to share everything I have learnt with the people who might benefit the most.   

With the wedding approaching, I talked to a friend of mine who is a professional make-up artist and she told me all about covering bruises with a colour corrective concealer.  I was amazed at how little I knew and how easy it would be. 

The first stage of bruise is usually red or pink.  These are very young bruises and probably hurt a lot still.  In this first stage of bruising, the best colour concealer is one with a green base.

A deep or large bruise will turn blue or purple.  These bruises are the most unsightly and the ones you will want to cover up the most.  During this stage in the bruises' life, it is best to go with a yellow based concealer, or any concealer with a yellow tint in it.

When your bruise is at the end of its life and starting to fade, it will turn yellow or green-ish.  These bruises are the easiest to cover up as they are normally quite thin under the skin.  These bruises are best covered with a lavender based concealer before any make up is applied. 

I wrote an article about matching bruise colours to the right colour corrective concealers and it is now one of the most popular articles on ITP and Me.  Writing this article helped me to realise that people with ITP are looking for practical advice.  

Medical websites and journal articles can only help so much.  ITP patients are looking for information on how to work with ITP on a daily basis and want tips to make their disorder easier to manage. 

It turns out there was only one bruise on my body for the day of the wedding; a circular bruise on the topside of my foot.  The photographers (who were amazing) simply removed it with Photoshop.

Thanks Meg.  

We may have ITP, but ITP does not have us.  




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