Yet another sufferer here. After so many internet searches, looking for my own diagnosis, finally stumbled upon this - so now Im joining the conversation. Heres my story:
Im 27yo and as far as I can remember, I first started getting the oozy spots when I was a sophomore in college... so... 8 or 9 years ago. I remember that because I remember the first time I had to miss class due to my horrific face. I saw the school doctor back then and he told me it was acne, prescribed me Finacea. That did nothing to help but it did also make my skin red and peel.
For years after that though I mostly just dealt with it. Like everyone else, I learned pretty quickly that nothing was going to make it stop oozing. I remember the early years of constant wiping and oh... the time I tried to blow dry my face because I thought maybe I could make it dry out before the yellow crust got any bigger! [_that didnt work!_] So, the fastest path to healing was just to let it scab over and not touch it.
I noticed over the years tho a strong correlation with dry skin. I have exceptionally dry skin on my face. If one drop of water hits my face, when the water dries my skin will crack and peel. I fear the rain, pools, and beaches. I've had the best results over the years by just being extremely diligent about moisturizing. But the puss still comes. I can never stop it completely. And certain situations make it much worse, such as airplanes. For years I hated airplanes because I knew I would walk off the plane with an outbreak, no matter how much moisturizer I used. But planes are exceptionally drying environments.
Then, about a year and a half ago, I was playing with my friends kid and put some paint on my face. It dried and my red turned red and swollen and within 24hrs my entire face had erupted in the worse oozing puss spots Ive ever had. I was basically a monster. Small children starred at me in the street. During that episode my derm told me it was impetigo and prescribed me Cephalexin and Mupriocin. They cultured my nose and I had staph. The most horrible breakout Ive ever had cleared up within 24hrs with these meds and I hailed it a miracle. One week after my cephalexin prescription ran out, the ooze spots came back. I went back to my derm and she told me to start rubbing Mupriocin around my nose every day, twice a day, for 1 week every month for 6 months. My husband did it to. The ooze spots persisted. [And by the way, my husband, nor anyone else Ive ever known, including all my past boyfriends, have ever had this, so I was always skeptical about impetigo which is highly contagious]
Then a few months ago I finally said 'enough is enough'. I went back to the derm. I tried another round of Cephalexin and Mupriocin but this time I got puss spots while still on the meds. Also, my nose culture came back negative for staph this time. My derm recommended me for a special monthly meeting of derms from all over the area to work together on "tough cases", aka medical mysteries. I spent a whole day talking to 30 different doctors and everyone came up guessing - acne, zinc allergies, rosacea, the whole gamut, but no one really knew.
So we decided to treat it as rosacea - I started Doxycycline and topical Metronidazole. The pus spots have kept coming, now worse than before, and in the meantime my face has turned red and swollen and painful and is peeling, which is maybe why the puss spots are worse.
Anyway, thats my story and here I am now. Guess Ill go back to the derm and ask to treat it as demodex, based on everything Ive read here. I know this echoes what so many have said before, but it is nice to not feel so much like a 'medical mystery' anymore.
Thats me with a mild outbreak: