The Galleries

Last Updated: 28 Jan 2012

In my quest to get to the bottom of this problem, I’ve taken approximately 2,500 photomicrographs (don’t worry, they’re not all here). There are still a large number of images in some of the sub-galleries because I felt it was necessary to show the various forms of some of these objects. You’re under no obligation to view them all, of course, but they’re there if you wish to.

There are five main galleries, each of which contains a number of sub-galleries. They are:

1. Plugs Everywhere
  • Contains nine sub-galleries of plugs categorised by appearance/type/source.

2. It’s Life, Jim...
  • Contains seven sub-galleries of plugs with emergent material and insects categorised by appearance/source.

3. Skin Deep
  • Contains five sub-galleries of live and dead skin with marks, embedded objects, and other anomalies categorised by appearance/type.

4. Filaments
  • Contains five sub-galleries of filaments in live and dead skin categorised by appearance/source.

5. Unidentifiables
  • Contains one sub-gallery of objects taken from my skin and bedding that I couldn’t identify.

6. Larva: The Movie
  • Contains a single short movie showing plugs and what resembles a larva on my scalp.

7. Gone in 50 Seconds
  • Contains a movie that shows a demodex mite being killed in 50 seconds by a natural household substance.

Photomicrographs & Video: AMT413T Dino-Lite Pro.

Photos: iPhone 3GS and iMac iSight.

Specimens: All specimens are the result of a tickle event. When it happens, I brush the area as gently as I can with my fingers while leaning over an large old black mouse-mat (pictured below – it’s also the background you see in most of the images). Obviously, this is not the professional way to collect and photograph samples, but since no dermatologist seems willing to do it for me, I have no other choice.

Categorisation: Sorting into their various categories was easy for most specimens. Some presented a choice of where to put them. But there are no duplicates in these galleries. I tried always to choose the most obvious characteristic and place it in the relevant category. You may not agree that my choices are correct. That’s OK.

Images: Most images are photographed at 200 times actual size. Some larger objects are shot at 60 or 100 times actual size. Most have embedded text comments written before I knew what I was looking for and so a few of these may be incorrect or irrelevant. Later images have no embedded text simply because there are now too many objects coming off my face, scalp and neck. Here’s a shot of one hour’s worth of brushed-off tickles on a bad afternoon:

One hour’s worth of tickles. You can’t see the smaller objects here but they’re there.

Copyrights: You are free to download and use my photomicrographic images for any purpose as long as you include a link to in the caption or another appropriate place. All other images remain the copyright of their authors. For some of these original images, I have emailed authors/owners to seek permission to use their images. Only two replied. If you own one of these images and feel it shouldn’t be here, please let me know and I will replace it.

Image Captions: My gallery software allows me the choice of captions or file-names for images, but not both. I chose file names for image identifiability purposes. If I can find a way to add captions later, I may do so.

Please bear in mind that I’m a writer and composer, not a trained microscopist, photographer, or web designer.

But in the absence of constructive medical help I’ve done the very best I could. After all, I have pretty good motivation.

View the “Plugs Everywhere” gallery to continue the story...