Hey. Lot’s of questions there, but I’ll do my best. Firstly, let me preface this by mentioning that I’m by no means very knowledgeable about this stuff and everything I say may be wrong. Ok, so I’m thinking that putting a shell over our lips wouldn’t necessarily prevent them from healing. All of the cellular materials that are needed to repair tissues are transported from lower layers. Imagine inflating a balloon a tiny bit and then placing a rubber band around it. The band would be like the shell and if the balloon was inflated a little more (healing) the shell would stretch to accommodate. Another way to think about it would be to think about those new liquid bandaids…they basically form a shell, but don’t prevent healing.
About the natural grooves: I’ve noticed that some of the vertical lines that are common on lips have returned…which I’m taking as a good sign.
That sucks about the bactroban thing :( and good luck with the patch testing (although, I agree about probably not finding too much; also, even if an allergy is found, it might not have anything to do with the peeling)
About leaving the shell on: Today I left it on and it wasn’t even noticeable. In fact, I’m looking at it right now and it might not even be noticeable. Putting it on with a finger seems to allow a lot more control and lets a smaller amount be used. Also, I quickly wiped off (with water) the stuff that had gotten onto areas that don’t peel.
The removal procedure: it’s a pain in the ass to remove this stuff. Basically, I had to first put on some vinegar and then soak the area in water. And then it was still hard to get off (took a long time, because I was trying to be really careful not to damage the areas where the fresh skin seemed to be forming). Even though the gel ends up looking a lot like skin, I’m pretty sure that if you’re super careful, it can be removed without destroying the new skin.
About the rawness: there have definitely been times when, after getting frustrated or just going to quickly, some of the areas have appeared to be very raw. I’m not completely sure, but it seems like the lines were not there (but there were a bunch of little dots, kinda like a sponge, which I think were under layers that aren’t ever supposed to be exposed to the air).
Oh, almost forgot. Using the “how red do the areas look in natural sunlight” test seems to be, at least for me, one of the most effective ways of determining what’s going on (if the layers just aren’t there, then it’ll always appear a lot more red; natural lip redness is a function of the skin being thinner, which allows blood to be seen more easily through the skin, so this test basically looks for a modification to a naturally modified area: the lips). Anyway, using that test, my lips are gradually looking less red
I haven’t had a biopsy…the thought of getting a sections of my lip removed kinda freaks me out (although it probably wouldn’t be that bad).
I’ll keep posting updates