John Wakefield’s Story
Since age 14, I’ve been through endless unsuccessful treatments for psoriasis including salves, wraps, sunlamps, diets, and over-the-counter remedies. At times more than 35 percent of my body was covered with scales and reddish patches. In the summer my psoriasis would improve, but during the winter it would worsen; it was a living nightmare.
For more than 54 years, I’ve been to dermatologists who practice in Auburn, Bangor, Waterville, and Portland. The most successful treatment was when a doctor prescribed the high-powered drug Soriatane. I was doing fairly well with this treatment, yet after I saw an advertisement for the new Franklin Health Dermatology practice, I decided to try it out because it would cut down on my travel time to appointments.
My first appointment with Dr. Sparling was in October of 2009. What really impressed me was when I went back for my second visit. Dr. Sparling told me that he had spent more than three hours researching the drug Soriatane because of his concerns about the long-term adverse effects it might have on my health due to the fact that I have just one functioning kidney. That impressed me big time.
Dr. Sparling told me that his treatment goal was to get me off Soriatane by using the light booth. He explained that it uses high-output proven phototherapy treatment with the latest technology in UV light therapy, called narrow band UVB. And, it is one of the most effective ways to treat eczema, psoriasis, and vitiligo.
I underwent phototherapy treatments in the office three times a week for about three months; then the weekly appointments were gradually cut back to two and finally one visit per week. The Soriatane use has been cut back, too, to one dose every other day. I now have absolutely no spots of psoriasis on my body.
To sustain my condition, I purchased a home phototherapy unit that I use for three minutes once a week. Nevertheless, I still go back to Dr. Sparling once a month for evaluations and periodically have lab tests he has ordered done at Franklin Memorial Hospital Outpatient Services in Livermore Falls.
I like taking my goldendoodle puppy, Code, for walks. With summer approaching, it’s going to be so nice to be able to wear short-sleeves and shorts without being self conscious!