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Ducky's Accutane Log

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#1 Ducky8989

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Posted 25 September 2010 - 08:58 PM

HISTORY

I've had acne since I was about 12. It was persistent through my teens despite trying BP, Salicylic acid, benzaclin, retin a, minocycline and birth control pills. From about age 18-20 it subsided, perhaps finally from the minocycline or the birth control both of which I had gone off of at that point. I still had occasional breakouts, but nothing that bothered me particularly. In my early teens I mostly had acne in my T area, then once it subsided I would get the occasional breakout along my jaw or hairline.
Then, last year after my 20th birthday I finally decided to quit going to tanning beds, which I had done once or twice a month since I was about 16 (terrible, I know). I still have no idea if this was responsible for my new breakouts, but I suspect it was a factor. Within the months that followed my acne slowly but surely began to worsen. These new breakouts were mostly on my cheeks and chin (something that I had never really gotten before) and were mostly papules and pustules with an occasional cyst. My skin also seemed to be healing slower, breakouts would take months to heal and I began to get red marks which I had also never gotten before. I had a cluster of pustules on each cheek which would blow up, ooze, then turn into scabs, then red marks that almost looked like they were healing, and then would blow up again.
Finally, after almost a year of trying to treat these breakouts with organic products and natural remedies I decided to return to the dermatologist for the first time in almost 4 years. He put me back on minocycline and gave me tazorac 0.1%. The mino didn't do much, and the tazorac wreaked havoc on my face during the initial breakout causing more breakouts and more inflammation than I had ever had before. I also got my first ever pitted scars on my face sad.gif Finally after about 4 months of that the breakouts started to subside a little, and I even started to see some of the anti-aging results from the taz (plumped up scars and overall texture), but I was still breaking out persistently. My dermatologist said to stick with it a little longer and also prescribed Aczone for daytime. The aczone helped A LOT with the inflammation, but did nothing to help stop breakouts.
This brings me to my accutane journey... two weeks ago I finally started accutane. My father, who suffered from terrible cystic acne and has pitted scarring all over his face did a course of accutane in his 40s (pretty much right when it came out) which was very successful. Hopefully I will have the same results.

DAY 14

I have officially been on 40 mg of accutane daily for two weeks now! Thus far no improvement in my skin. Things will seem like they are disappearing one day then return the next, but having had acne for so long I know that NOTHING -even accutane- is a quick fix, so I am pretty patient.

The only time I really tend to break down and get upset about my skin is when I am putting on makeup. It's just SO FRUSTRATING to spend literally an hour trying to make yourself look acne free and still feel like a pizza face after all that hard work. I cannot wait for the day I can go back to waking up, rolling out of bed, and going to class makeup-free! Anyway, back to accutane... no real side effects yet except for chapped lips. I'm still not experiencing any dryness except maybe a tiny bit on my scalp, but that could just be the weather.

One side effect I am really wary of is hair loss. I just spent the past year growing out my hair from a short cut (which, although adorable, I got sick of) and I really really don't want all of that to have been for nothing! Right now my hair is long, healthy and beautiful!

Anyway, best of luck to all the other accutaners out there.. fingers crossed that this wont be as painful of an experience as tazorac was!

Edited by Ducky8989, 25 September 2010 - 09:06 PM.


#2 axtine8

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Posted 25 September 2010 - 10:07 PM

Hi there Ducky!

Just wanted to wish you luck. smile.gif I'm sorry that you haven't had much success with other treatments, but your days with acne are numbered! It seems like most people go through a purging stage the first two months, and during the third month is when things really pick up and the best results start to shine through. I can't wait to see the transformation!

Hang in there, we're all here to support you!
Amy

#3 Del!

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Posted 26 September 2010 - 01:06 AM

Hi! Best of luck with your course! puting on make up to hide flaws is the worst feeling ever! I want to wear makeup to look nice, not as a mask!

Keep us posted and I hope it all goes smoothly for you!

#4 Ducky8989

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Posted 27 September 2010 - 04:49 PM

Thanks for the support, guys!

DAY 16

I'm not sure if this is the accutane or maybe the fact that I have been using liquid foundation (I usually only use powder) recently, but a bunch of papule or milia-like bumps have shown up on my cheeks. They arent coming to a head, but they are somewhat inflamed and just below the skin. Grrrrr. Other than that nothing to report. I never got the ok from my dermatologist (I'll ask him when I see him in a couple weeks) but I have been using my tazorac mixed in with a moisturizer once a week (I may up it to twice) since I started accutane to maintain the anti-aging benefits. So far no problems.

Still no issues with side effects either. Its odd, the chapped lips seem to come and go really abruptly.

I really need to remember to drink more water, I have been pretty inconsistent.

#5 Ducky8989

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Posted 30 September 2010 - 03:02 PM

DAY 19

Still no changes to report. This is getting a little frustrating.. I know its early for improvement but I'd like to see SOME sign that accutane is doing something. I still haven't noticed any dry skin on my face. I'm not even using moisturizer most of the time. I have chapped lips but they seem to come and go. I'm not breaking out that much but the old acne on my face just will NOT heal.. its been this way for months. sad.gif

I started taking vitamin D yesterday.. I'm wondering if maybe that would account for why I started breaking out when I stopped tanning. Although I get the feeling it's more complicated than that. I also take fish oil supplements, vitamin E, zinc, biotin, and C occasionally. I also take probiotics most of the time.

Anyway.. I'm trying to stay patient but I have this fear that I am going to be one of the few that accutane doesn't work for. My acne is moderate and sometimes mild and is mostly papules and pustules but I get pretty bad scarring.. I've heard that accutane is more effective for nodular/cystic acne so that worries me.


#6 Ducky8989

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 03:43 PM

DAY 31

Unfortunately still nothing great to report. Two days ago my derm upped my dosage from 40 mg a day to 40 mg and 80 mg alternating every other day. My skin on the whole seems a a bit drier but still not bad enough that I can't skip the moisturizer most of the time. In terms of breakouts, things seem to be staying beneath the skin more rather than coming to a head, but I am still feeling tons of bumps under there. I even got a cyst on my right cheek which I haven't had in a very long time. But again, I don't feel like I am having an initial breakout per se because things aren't really worse than before I started accutane, just different. Red marks definitely seem to be lingering longer, but I knew to expect that. Sadly, I've seen a lot more noticeable pitted scarring since I've started. I'm not really sure why I'm not showing any improvement, especially since I don't have particularly bad acne. I'm still trying to be patient though.

Edited by Ducky8989, 15 October 2010 - 05:08 PM.


#7 faithinhim

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Posted 14 October 2010 - 03:29 PM

Congrats on finishing your first month of Accutane. I can tell you from experience that the first month is the slowest--each subsequent month will fly by faster and faster. It won't be long, and you'll be done with Accutane and have CLEAR skin! Don't give up. Stay strong. It'll be totally worth it in the end.

#8 Ducky8989

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 02:31 PM

QUOTE (faithinhim @ Oct 14 2010, 04:29 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Congrats on finishing your first month of Accutane. I can tell you from experience that the first month is the slowest--each subsequent month will fly by faster and faster. It won't be long, and you'll be done with Accutane and have CLEAR skin! Don't give up. Stay strong. It'll be totally worth it in the end.


Thanks for the support!

#9 Ducky8989

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Posted 16 October 2010 - 02:36 PM

DAY 35

Ughhhh these last few days have been horrible! I've broken out all over my cheeks... I'm not really sure what they are.. I guess papules? They are inflamed and just below the skin but don't come to a head. Really sucks. I don't know if its because I just upped my dosage a few days ago or because it's the week before my period. I'm also wondering if wearing foundation (i use revlon colorstay with a drop of jojoba oil) every day has been aggravating the situation but I seriously can't go out in public without it. I just can't wait for this to be OVER. I feel like i just went straight from 4 months of initial breakouts on tazorac to this and I am definitely getting frustrated! When do most people start to see improvements? I would really like to be looking a lot better by thanks giving sad.gif

#10 Ducky8989

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Posted 19 October 2010 - 02:44 PM

I forgot to add that in the first month all of my blackheads disappeared. This could be because of reincorporating the tazorac a couple of weeks after starting accutane though. Prior to starting accutane, while i was on tazorac I had gotten rid of all blackheads but not inflamed acne on my cheeks and chin. Then I quit using the taz when I started accutane but after a couple of weeks without any dryness or irritation I decided to reincorporate the taz but only 2-3 times a week. Thus far no problems, but as I said in my last update I'm still breaking out.

#11 Ducky8989

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 11:26 AM

DAY 40

I'm so depressed. My acne has literally never been worse. It is just so inflamed! Could this be because I increased my dosage a week or two ago? I just don't understand my skin at all.. its not like I'm breaking out, healing, and then getting more breakouts.. none of my breakouts ever seem to heal at all! There are breakouts on my face that have literally been there for 6 months... HOW IS THAT EVEN POSSIBLE???? I also don't get any types of severe acne.. everything is just pustules and mostly papules with only an occasional cyst.. yet my body can't seem to get rid of it! This never used to happen to me... only with in the past year has my skin stopped being able to heal itself... its just so weird. It worries me that there is something else wrong with me that is causing this. I eat well, I only drink alcohol about once a week, and I get some exercise (I run a couple of times a week). I'm having some friends coming to stay with me in a month and I'm terrified of being seen by them without makeup.. is there any hope that accutane will have helped by then?? I'm considering asking my derm for some prednisone.. I've heard it works well for inflammation. I'm just so sick of having to deal with this sad.gif

#12 dorismarilyn

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Posted 20 October 2010 - 10:43 PM

Yes. I started my treatment at 40, moved to 50, then 60 and every time i broke out. Don't get discouraged. I had pretty severe acne and have had a cysts on my face for like three years! It's finally starting to dry now that I am on month 5 out of 5 of Accutane.
Are you on birth control? Have you considered it to stabilize hormones?
Hope you're feeling better!
Here's my blog if you want to check it out, dorismarilyn.blogspot.com I am currently on day 134 of my treatment.

#13 Ducky8989

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 11:21 AM

QUOTE (dorismarilyn @ Oct 21 2010, 12:43 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Yes. I started my treatment at 40, moved to 50, then 60 and every time i broke out. Don't get discouraged. I had pretty severe acne and have had a cysts on my face for like three years! It's finally starting to dry now that I am on month 5 out of 5 of Accutane.
Are you on birth control? Have you considered it to stabilize hormones?
Hope you're feeling better!
Here's my blog if you want to check it out, dorismarilyn.blogspot.com I am currently on day 134 of my treatment.


Thanks for the support! Yeah I agree that it is probably the increase in my dosage that caused this horrible breakout. I'm just nervous because my acne wasn't that bad to begin with, definitely not beyond moderate, and since I know accutane wasn't intended for that type of acne I'm worried it won't be as effective. But it really was a last resort for me and nothing else has worked.
Anyway, yes I am definitely considering birth control for after I go off of accutane.. I just didn't want to throw another variable into the mix because I wanted to be able to pinpoint what was doing what.
I am thinking of asking my dermatologist for some prednisone to help bring down the inflammation.. I have some events coming up that I would really like to look better for.

#14 Ducky8989

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Posted 25 October 2010 - 12:09 PM

DAY 45

So things seem to be calming down/drying up in the last day or so. I don't want to speak too soon because this has happened before, but hopefully my body is adjusting to the higher dose and the "second IB" that I got is subsiding. We'll see. I've been feeling awful since I upped my dosage though... getting lots of colds and just feeling all around exhausted. I'm considering asking my dermatologist to put me back on 40 mg a day instead of 60. Is there any real benefit to being on a higher dose other than finishing sooner?

#15 Cackutane

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Posted 25 October 2010 - 12:26 PM

i just got upped from 60 to 80 a few weeks ago and this is my second month, i am just gettin over a cold and another breakout from the dosage change, so im with ya on that one.

and i wonder if there is a benefit to being on a higher dosage

im 20/m/185lbs

#16 Ducky8989

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Posted 26 October 2010 - 11:51 PM

DAY 47

Wow. Dramatic improvement in the past day. Redness has gone down immensely. Things have also flattened out A TON. I really hope this isn't just a fluke. It seems way too good to be true. I still have a stupid cold... I think I can expect to have one at all times for the rest of my course. I am also putting my workout aspirations on hold..ugh.

#17 Ducky8989

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Posted 02 November 2010 - 10:24 AM

DAY 54

The improvement I was seeing a week ago has stayed for the most part (YAYYY) but has definitely plateaued. I'm not really breaking out anymore at all but the dormant stuff that has been there for a while still isn't disappearing. I'm hoping that slowly but surely in the next month that stuff starts to heal. Redness has definitely gone down a lot though. What has also happened that I was not expecting is that the texture of my skin looks BETTER! I've always heard that things would get thin and too dry, but my skin is really soft!

#18 Ducky8989

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Posted 02 November 2010 - 10:32 AM

ps. since i've been feeling better I decided not to ask my derm to lower my dosage and see how things go. I just saw him yesterday and he said he was planning to keep me on the 60 mg for the rest of my course. He hasn't actually mentioned how long my course is going to be... but I'm assuming it will be 4 months since that would bring me to a cumulative dose of 120 kg.

#19 Ducky8989

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Posted 03 November 2010 - 05:35 PM

DAY 55

Grrrr.. a few new guys popped up this morning. I'm hoping its because of a weekend of drinking and not eating as well as usual.

#20 Ducky8989

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Posted 11 November 2010 - 03:32 PM

DAY 61

Ugh.. things have definitely plateaued if not gotten a bit worse. I'm getting so sick of this. To make matters worse my red marks seem MUCH more noticeable recently. I really hope these don't stick around long after I get clear. I tried to put on some self tanner today to see if it would even out the red marks but it looks like it is just going to make them darker and more noticeable sad.gif
It's the week before my period which is usually a very bad time for me and I'm not really having much of a flareup so that's good news. I'm wondering if its possible that the reason my red marks look so inflamed right now has anything to do with my menstrual cycle? I know that this time of the month definitely causes more inflamed acne for me... is it possible that more inflamed PIH is from that too?