Another TSW Doctors to Know

In this post, I would like to talk about a very special couple.  They are a hard-working, dedicated couple who are in a constant battle against the conventional Topical Steroid-based treatment of Atopic Dermatitis. 

Their names are Dr. Kenji Sato and Dr. Mitsuko Sato.  You've probably never heard of them unless you saw some of my previous posts (like this one).  They are both doctors who specialise in Topical Steroid Withdrawal, Protopic Withdrawal and Moisturiser Withdrawal. They are not well-known outside Japan - they are not even listed on the ITSAN website. But in Japan, they are at the forefront of TSW, as well as two of the most experienced TSW doctors.

This young-looking gentleman is Dr. Kenji Sato.
This lovely smiley lady is Dr. Mitsuko Sato.



Dr. Kenji Sato is in his mid-60s (although he doesn't look like it!). He is a full-time dermatologist at Hannan Chuo Hospital in Osaka, where they provide the inpatients facility for people during TSW.  His wife, Dr. Mitsuko Sato is a pediatrician who also specialises in TSW for babies and children. Their clinics are safe havens for people who decide to go through TSW in Japan.

They have published two very practical how-to-TSW books (I translated bits here and here).  They regularly travel across Japan to give speeches to raise awareness of TSW and support TSA patients groups.  So far, more than 3000 people attended their presentations. There is also a non-profit organisation called 'Atopic' which is formed by Dr. Satos' patients who went through TS/Protopic/Moisturiser Withdrawal. Like ITSAN, they have an online discussion board and SNS, some questions were answered by Dr. Sato himself. The Satos have blogs as well. In addition to their full-time jobs as doctors, they've been doing all these extra works to share their expertise and to raise awareness of TS/Protopic/Moisturiser Withdrawal.

What an amazing work ethic! Do they have time to sleep? I always imagine them like Japanese superheros. Fighting against the side effects of TS etc day and night for the sake of the peace of his patients.

Why am I suddenly talking about them, you may wonder? That is because I went to see them in person yesterday!  They held a free talk event in Tokyo, and I decided to go back to Japan for it. 

Japan is known for the best toilet in the world.

The event was certainly worth my long travel.

I would like to share what I learnt from the doctors' presentations in my blog very soon.  At the moment, I am trying to organise things in my head  - it was a long day filled with smiles... :)

Happy healing everyone x 

Comments

  1. They sound great. Kenji looks amazing for his age, proof that he must be a great dermatologist! These guys should be mentioned on itsan.

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    1. Thank you for your comment Louise! He does look great, doesn't he? I heard that both he and his wife used to have eczema too. I really believe that more people should know about them. Their achievements are absolutely phenomenal in Japan. x

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  2. Thank you so much for this. I can't wait to hear more about the presentation. Your posts has helped me heaps going through TSW at the moment. I'm in my 3rd month now and not moisturising after reading your post about what Dr. Sato has said. It's definitely better not putting anything on my skin though painful but more bearable then itching to death with moisturisers blocking my skin pores.
    You look amazing now, I hope I can be like you soon!
    xxx
    ahfaye
    byebyesteroids.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you for your kind words Ahfaye! Glad to know you found my blog useful:) I will definitely write about the presentation soon. One of the things they emphasised during the presentation was moisturiser withdrawal was 'essential' rather than 'encouraged'. Wishing you all the best with your recovery. You WILL get there!:) x

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  3. This is so interesting Tommy, imagine healing centres for tsw sufferers are alive and well in Japan. They must be going against the grain too, so it's some achievement. Keen to hear more, thanks for posting!

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    1. Thank you Wendy:) Yeah, after meeting them and their patients in person, I do think of them as asylums for TSW sufferers. I will post more on the event soon. Thank you for stopping by x  

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  4. HI tommy,
    i like how your map says Japan is known for the best toilets in the world.
    i would love to go visit japan.
    are you still living there? or are you in UK right now?
    are you working?
    i love your blog.
    when i am down i read your entries and look at your pictures and you give me hope!

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    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Lisa :) How are you doing these days? I remember you had a tough period about 2 months ago. I hope you're seeing some progress. I'm in Japan for another month, and then will go back to the UK. Luckily I could take some work with me to Japan. If you have a chance to visit Japan, I'll give you the list of TSW docs here! :)x

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  5. If i could i really would love to meet u.
    Maybe when I'm a bit better. Im still having a rough time at 4 months. Did u have l ots of flares? What would you say was your worst months? At what month did you really notice improveMents?
    I am at a stage where I'm beginning to accept it a bit more. The accepting part is hard.

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    1. Hi Lisa, yes I did have a lot of flares. My worst month was probably Month 5 & 6 & 7 this time, but before my skin reached the worst point on the 1st month of TSW. So I think it varies. I only noticed improvements April this year, but my case this time was a really slow healing process and many people seem to heal quicker than me. I can completely relate to you Lisa, I still cannot say that I accepted my withdrawal self... after going through withdrawal 4 times! Yeah I hope we can meet up one day when you get better. I bet we will have a lot of laughs about this TSW thing! x

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    2. Thanks Tommy.
      I go on your blog alot of times and re-read all your post.
      your words give me comfort.
      It's so hard to accept this tsw stuff. did you ever wonder if it was just eczema? and if it was just eczema does it naturally just go away on it's own?? i feel like i am chasing my problem. is it laundry soap? is it face wash? is it this? did you have these worries and doubts?
      i am almost in month 5 and i am having a hard time. when your scales were falling off, did they just fall off anytime? i barely shed. but i see lots of dry flakes and scales and rough skin. i am not a happy camper :(

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    3. Hi Lisa, ah thank you for your kind words. Because English isn't my native language, I am constantly worried if my blog posts make any sense to readers. English is so hard... I did have a lot of worries and doubts. I'm still trying to figure out what's best for my skin by trial and error. I see scaling as a sign of healing. I know it's so annoying and lasts like forever, yet it's a necessary step for your skin to recover. It can fall anytime, in fact in my case it fell all the time!

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  6. Tommy, your posts are always so informative. You are definitely looking great! I tried withdrawing from moisturizers awhile ago, but it was so hard. I hope I can get to that point soon.

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    1. Hi Sandra :) Thank you for your kind comment! I understand that moisturiser withdrawal is as hard as TSW, but according to those docs it is essential in most cases. Maybe tapering off moisturisers is easier, but don't push yourself too hard. Once you get to the point your skin is fine without moisturisers, you will feel your skin becomes stronger (and saving some time and money too!) x

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  7. Dear Tommy! Thank you for all the posts! I found your blog maybe month ago. Ans i am so amazed by how beautiful your skin looks now! I'm in TSW for about 16 months,and still having hard times. Your last post about Dr.Sato is just great! I even thought maybe i could visit the clinici,if it will possible for me. I even thinking about restart my japanese lessons.
    Doumo arigatou gozaimasu!

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    1. Hello Minnie-Cat, thank you so much for your comment. I'm glad you found my blog useful :) If you have a chance to come to Japan, it's a good idea to visit his hospital in Osaka. I've never been to his hospital, but I definitely would if I have my fifth rebound in the future (hopefully it won't happen!). I don't know how much it's going to cost without National Insurance or if Dr. Sato speaks English, but if you do decide to visit his hospital I can try to find out those info for you. Dou itashi mashite :) x

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  8. Thank you for invaluable information!

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    1. Thank you for your comment:) Glad you found it useful.

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  9. This is such a contribution to our understanding. I thank you very much.
    I have a few question for you. Given what you heard at this conference about "Moisturizer Withdrawal", do you still feel comfortable using Dr. Fukaya's lotion? Also, in an earlier post you mentioned scratching your arms as useful. Did this conference change your thinking about this?
    Rosemary

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    1. Hi Rosemary, thank you for your kind words. Regarding Dr. Fukaya's lotion, yes I am still comfortable using it, because I feel his lotion doesn't really moisturise my skin so much. In fact, he wrote in his blog that 'it never is a moisturizer but a kind of nutrient for keratinocytes'. If you read his blog post '
      Is moisturizing really a help to cure?', it looks like that Dr. Fukaya admits some benefits of non-moisturiser too. About scratching arms, I'm sorry I must have put it in a wrong way - I don't especially find it 'useful' but I don't mind scratching so I don't really try to hold it. The conference didn't change my mind on this. When I come to think of it, in Dr. Sato's book he said something like 'you don't need to hold scratching because skin should heal no matter what'. And I find this is true.

      Hope this answers to your questions :)

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    2. I thank you so much for your reply. You are doing such a wonderful thing by publishing this blog and providing so much useful information.
      I have had dramatic results with Dr. Fukaya's lotion. But I have had quick results before--with Urea 10% lotion with topical steroids and later with CeraVe with topical steroids. Eventually each of them stopped working for me and I was left with just the steroids. I think they and the steroids thinned my skin and they had too many ingredients. I stopped everything 2-3 months ago and Dr. Fukaya's lotion is the first thing to touch my skin (except water) since then, so I am a little afraid. It is amazing. The "normal skin" near my "red patches" is so much healthier feeling and looking. My red areas are better too. I wore socks without discomfort for the first time since July.
      Rosemary

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    3. Hello Rosemary, I'm so glad to hear that you're getting better and better :) I know how afraid it feels to try something new on skin at first - I was the same and found Dr. Fukaya's lotion so un-irritating! I wish you speedy, steady healing. x

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    4. Hi everyone, does anybody who's skin has thinned through steroids found that Dr Fukaya's lotion has reversed this and thickened the skin, even if it is only slightly? Ross

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    5. Hello Ross, the lotion worked well on my thinned skin. You can see my before/after pics on http://skinofrose.blogspot.jp/2013/06/dr-fukayas-skin-repair-lotion-now.html .

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