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Medical problems can lead to changes in skin coloring

Medical problems can lead to changes in skin coloring (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - The musical “Wicked” continues its run at the Aronoff Center.

Crowds are there to see the “green girl” who is the Wicked Witch of the West in the Wizard of Oz prequel, but that green color is raising a few questions about skin coloring and health, and a few local doctors have the answers.

No common health condition would likely turn your skin green according to health care providers, but did you ever notice that sometimes when a person isn't well, the first thing you notice is a change in their coloring?

The Bethesda Family Medicine Team and the actors in the Broadway musical Wicked want to help explain.

“I've never seen green skin,” admits Dr. Scott Woods.

He has however seen color change in skin when people are not well.

“Skin can certainly manifest things from the inside,” said Dr. Scott Woods.

For example, yellowed skin often develops in advanced kidney or liver disease as you get more jaundice.

Without the right nutrients from food, skin color can also change when there's a lack of iron.

“If you are really pale, are real anemic, it can look really ghostly,” said Dr. Woods.

Breathing or vascular problems can make a person you look gray or blue from lack of blood flow.

While all of these may be a bit subtler than green, it reminds everyone that coloring can be an indication of health.

If you notice skin changes, you should seek medical attention. Quite often skin returns to good coloring, when the problem is resolved.

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