Before Nina called Dr. Olivia Hsu Friedman, she’d been suffering from Topical Steroid Withdrawal (TSW) for five years. Her case was extreme and debilitating, with flare-ups that were disfiguring and agonizing. After hearing her story, another TSW sufferer told Nina that seeing Olivia was really helping her.
TSW Can Bring a Fear of Treatment
“It took me a few months to actually decide to try herbal medicine,” says Nina. “There is so much fear in the TSW community, understandably, because we’ve seen Chinese medicine products in the past that contained undisclosed steroids.”
“Also, since our condition was originally caused by a prescription or treatment, TSW can create a degree of paranoia about what we’re putting into our bodies. I finally thought, ‘I have nothing to lose. I’ve been suffering for such a long time that I haven’t had a life for five years.’”
Lasting Results Instead of a Quick Fix
Nina started her treatment with Dr. Olivia Hsu Friedman in January of 2019. “Because it takes a while to work. It’s not an immediate cure. It takes time and dedication. If you want to do it, you have to be ‘all in.’”
“In two to three months I was already seeing results on my skin. TSW doesn’t just affect your skin. My health improved in so many ways. In six months, I started to see a reduction in anxiety, less restlessness, and stopped feeling hot all the time. I can sleep better and can work full time now. The degree of healing fluctuated over time.”
“In addition to the herbal medicine I drink twice a day, at some point we also added herbal topicals, which I was really nervous about – but I’ve had nothing but great results so far. I’m just over the moon that I’ve actually found something that is making a difference. I had tried everything under the sun and nothing else had ever worked with me.”
Nina’s Before and After Photos:
Life-Changing Emotional Healing from TSW
What does she like best about her treatment? “The amazing thing is that with Olivia, we work as a team. It’s not like going into a western doctor’s office where you sit there for five minutes, get a prescription and leave. She takes the time to find out everything that’s going on with you, everything about you, and also offers emotional support while you’re going through the treatment. I’ve never experienced that before with any doctor or practitioner.”
“During the first few years of TSW my attitude remained very positive. I thought I’d be able to beat it. But after years of no results, by the time I saw Olivia I was in such a dark place. Working with her, and having faith and patience, my condition and outlook started to get better and better,” says Nina.
“Changing my skin, and working on the social, emotional and spiritual parts of myself, really caused a break-through for me. I said, ‘It’s time to live! It’s time to fight for my life, to go to work, to go do things’ I started feeling joy for the first time in years.”
Continued Healing and Skin Health Awareness
Nina still works at keeping her system in balance with healthy habits that give her body what it needs to stay well. “Once in a while I still have a bad skin day. My face might get a little bit red, or my arm, but it’s nothing like the past. I can still function and do the things I couldn’t do before,” she says.
Dr. Olivia Hsu Friedman observes, “Healing the root cause of a skin condition so that you can experience lasting results isn’t like taking a pill to shut off a mechanism in your body. If you stop taking that pill, the mechanism resumes and you have the same problem and maybe even worse symptoms. True healing is more like exercise. You don’t do one gym session and suddenly have six-pack abs. You have to work at it over time and keep it up. Likewise, skin health is something that returns over time as you change your physiology.”
Need Help with TSW?
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About the Author
Dr. Olivia Hsu Friedman, LAc, DACM, Cert. TCM Dermatology is the owner of Amethyst Holistic Skin Solutions and treats TSW patients via video conferencing using only herbal medicine. Olivia serves on the Advisory Board of LearnSkin, is the Chair of the American Society of Acupuncturists Board of Directors, and is a faculty member of the Chicago Integrative Eczema Support Group sponsored by The National Eczema Association.