I am 28 years old and have started having all sorts of issues. Cystic acne (moderately severe, on right side of face and chin), hirsutism and my hair is falling out like crazy. I don't mean, "Oh, I think my hair might be falling out." I mean, I wake up, it's all over my pillow, it falls out on my desk at work, and in clumps in the shower. My hair is super thick, which is why it's probably not noticeable to anyone else yet, but it will get there soon enough if I don't do anything about it. Also, my skin and hair became so incredibly oily, it was disgusting.
I started doxycycline for my acne around seven weeks ago, and it has only gotten worse since then. I don't think it was the doxycycline that did it, because all my other symptoms have gotten so much worse since then too. I think it was just a coincidence. I have done a ton of reading/research on what might be causing this, and I absolutely believe I have too much androgenic activity AKA my hormones are out of whack. i have every symptom of PCOS, but I haven't been officially diagnosed with it yet.
My dermatologist wanted to put me on Accutane. My acne has gotten so bad in the last few months that I went from refusing to take any oral medication whatsoever to considering accutane. However, I am almost positive I would be one of those people whose acne comes right back after the course is over. I want to treat the cause and not the symptom. So I went to my general physician and he immediately suggested spironolactone, which I was going to ask him for anyway. He said he has seen a lot of success with it in women he's prescribed it to. He also did bloodwork to check my hormones (and a metabolic panel), but said even if my hormones were in the normal range, it's still obvious that something is off, and I should try spiro anyway. This made me happy because I've heard a lot of stories of people who get their hormone levels checked and they are 'normal,' and therefore abandon hormone treatments.
I was prescribed 50 mg a day, 25 mg in the morning and at night. I started two days ago, but I only took 25 mg because it's a blood pressure medication and I wanted to make sure I wasn't going to pass out or get dizzy or whatever. Luckily that didn't happen, so today I am taking the full dose. Since I started a few days ago, I have noticed a slight improvement. That could be a coincidence, though. I am also still taking my 200 mg of doxy. I am really hoping the spiro helps with oil production sooner rather than later! I put on makeup and within an hour, my face is covered in oil. I know this is supposed to take several months to work, but I'm hoping I will see at least a little improvement relatively quickly. Regardless, I am going to stick it out for 3-4 months and see what happens. I also use Ziana twice a day. I've tried every topical under the sun and it's gotten to the point where that alone is not enough.
I will keep everyone updated.