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Valentines Day = Starting Roaccutane! (Picture Log)

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#1 McLemon

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Posted 13 February 2012 - 09:53 PM

Hi there,

So this is my first day of Roaccutane. I'm hoping that next valentines day, I'll be looking in the mirror and be able to be happy with what I see.

A quick history of my acne:

I began getting acne when I was 13, and it was pretty bad initially. My checks and forehead were covered in cysts. Then from the age of the 14 - 16 it calmed down a little, but then when I was 17 it broke out badly again.

I went on birth control for around 5 years, and my skin calmed down a lot but wasn't great, just manageable.

Anyway, when I was 21 I went off BC because I felt like it wasn't really fixing the problem, just covering it, and I didn't like how the pill made me feel.

I have tried to control my acne with washes and creams over the last 3 years, but it has began getting worse in the last 12 months and also to the point where I can't leave the house.

The large cysts have been coming and causing me a lot of pain. While I know my acne is only mild, it still causes me a lot of mental issues like depression and very low self esteem. When my skin is OK, I am happier and don't feel low at all, but then I break out horribly and I spiral down.

It has negatively affected my life in so many ways, keeping me indoors when a lot of my friends had gone out enjoying life. My skin scars really easily as I'm very fair skinned and I'd love one day not to have to cover my face in makeup!


Anyway, it's been over a decade now of having acne, I'm nearly 24, and I decided to take the plunge.

I am starting on 20mg a day and after six weeks I might be working up to 40mg or so. We'll see.

I am sick of putting it off. I know it's only our skin at the end of the day, but when it causes so much emotional scarring as well as physical...well then it's time to do something. I tried to work through it and just accept it, but this isn't how I want to live my life!

Anyway, here are some pictures at day one, without any make up. My skin isn't actually too bad today anyway, it tends to flare up every two weeks. Settle down a little, then flare up...etc.

I took my first 20mg pill with my cereal & soy milk this morning. Will be updating this thread hopefully every few days!

Good luck everyone...I just wanted to say also I know the struggle you're going through and I think you're all absolute troopers!

The future is bright!


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#2 brownbag

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 04:45 AM

Your skin is not that bad, well not as bad as it can be I suppose. You have spots but they are not formed in clusters which can wreck a girl's skin texture if they don't heal right. I can tell Accutane will do wonders for your skin.

p.s. I hate cysts too; they are the worst. I would dread waking up everyday to find I have a new painful spot I have to watch out for. Fortunately, that fear is gone now thanks to accutane. =)



#3 McLemon

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 05:30 AM

Hey Brownbag =)

Thanks for your response. =) How much Accutane did you take and how long for?

I am lucky that I don't have the clusters often, but I do scar quite easily which can be such a pain. And I am right there with you on the cysts! My skin tends to heal quite well I suppose, I have had some real carnage on my face and majority of the scars fade pretty quick...it's just the new acne that makes the scars stick around.

I just smile at the thought of not having to wear makeup. To be able to go swimming etc without thinking about my face looking horrible!

We've got to stay positive, don't we! =)

I like to believe that things can only get better! =)

P.S.Happy Valentines Day! Haha

Edited by McLemon, 14 February 2012 - 05:31 AM.


#4 Quiescence

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 07:14 AM

Hi lovely! Good luck on your course.. my valentines card this year is to accutane.. I <3 him...

I am no way near out of the woods yet but like you said I can now go swimming (or to the spa if lucky!) without wanting to cry thinking everyone is feeling sorry for me..

Your skin is quite similar to mine, very fair and pigments easily, my acne started worse than yours (see my pics on my log) and now I have hardly any spots... the pigmentatin will take a long time to go but I'm so happy.

It will be wonderful for you too

xxx x

#5 brownbag

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 02:08 PM

HI McLemon,

I was on 40mg for my first month, 80mg for my second, down to 40mg for third and fourth (only because my triglyceride level was so high, think 500's), 60mg for my fifth (managed to lower my triglyceride), 80mg for my sixth (which I'm currently on) and I think I might go one more full month then taper off the dosage in the final month instead of just stopping abruptly. My derm is really adamant about ending my treatment only when I am breakout free for at least a month. I know some derm stops you when you reach your cumulative dosage minumum regardlesss of your progress so I'm very lucky to have one that really cares.

I should mention I am only 5'1 and 97 pounds but it's never been a factor in how much accutane I can take. It's a pain in the ass to be on this medication for so long, especially since I've stopped having breakouts for 2 months already, but I really, really, really, don't want it to come back.

Accutane will give your skin a break from acne and allow your scars to heal. It might seem nasty in the second week because of the initial breakout but hang in there!

#6 blahdeeblah

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 02:59 PM

Hi there!

Your skin looks a lot like mine did when I started this process. I got on antibiotics and it calmed my face down a lot before I actually started accutane and so far my skin has had a fantastic reaction to accutane. You will do great and your skin will look wonderful!

#7 PaulH85

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Posted 14 February 2012 - 05:50 PM

Best of luck on your course, fingers crossed that it gives you the results and the great skin you're no doubt hoping for! :)


my valentines card this year is to accutane..


So, it's even possible for a drug to receive more valentines than me. All time low! :lol:

#8 McLemon

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Posted 15 February 2012 - 07:48 PM

Hey guys, thank each and every one of you for your positive feedback.

You are all so lovely, and I wish you all great skin and health! =)

Just a quick report on Day 3:

Skin is seeming slightly less oily!

That's really it! I'm waiting to see if I get the initial breakout, I guess it's a wait and see!

Feeling good!

Will keep updating, doing weekly pictures.

Thank you all again :D

#9 Chestercool

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Posted 15 February 2012 - 09:06 PM

high five! i started accutane on valentine's day aswell :)

about your "i took it with cereal and soy milk", did you realize that might be the reason you have acne? try to have a clean diet, dairy/gluten/sugar free for the first month, im experimenting with day, if we do that we might not have that initial breakout, and you might clear up without accutane aswell hehe ;) it works for me, but im a social person and im not happy having a strict diet. Good luck!

#10 McLemon

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 05:32 PM

Hey Chester :D

Good luck on your course, too! I'm sure you're skin will be awesome.

I am already a bit of a health freak to be honest, haha, because I can't eat gluten or lactose, my body doesn't agree with it.

I have been on an alkaline diet for about two years! Not for weight loss, just general health. I still try and let myself have something special every now and then, but I really don't like sugar or anything so I don't ever have the stuff.

I have a very very low sugar cereal (less that 0.5g of sugar per serve) and it's also gluten free...so is the soy milk. The only thing about the soy, is it's high in idione, and I've always felt like sea weed breaks me out (from sushi and so on) and I wasn't sure if idione was a factor, as I know sea weed is loaded with idione.

My acne is very hormonal, so I don't think diet would fix it per se, but I know it definitely helps somewhat and mostly it helps the skin heal quicker!

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Edited by McLemon, 16 February 2012 - 05:32 PM.


#11 McLemon

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 10:12 PM

I'm so shattered...

I'm only on day 10 and on 20mg and my side effects are already nearly too much for me to handle. I'm not bothered by my skin drying out, or standard headaches or nosebleeds, that's fine, but I have been getting horrible horrible migraines and head spins, nausea and terrible anxiety. I have felt like I am going to vomit every day and my blood pressure has been dropping as well causing my heart to race. I feel like I have a terrible hangover paired with a horrible virus all the time. I just feel sore and completely out of it.

I have always had a weird body / immune system and I also have a minor heart condition, and I was wary of these things possibly happening.

My skin is clearing already...which is breaking my heart because I know I have to make a choice. I can't live with these side effects, and if they are so bad so early on...well, it's a good indication my body definitely won't cope on a higher dose!

I think I'm going to have to pull the plug and I am so heart broken. I want clear skin so badly...but I can't do this for 6 months +. I think my body is telling me it can't either.

What do I do? I mean, if I can't do Roaccutane, does this mean I'm stuck with acne for the rest of my life? I'm 24.

I'm losing hope....

P.S. Please don't see this as me saying Roaccutane will do bad things to you, because I reckon it works well for most people with barely any side affects...but unfortunately I have a super weird body / immune system and always have. =(

Gutted...so so gutted.


#12 esa

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 10:49 PM

I'm really sorry to hear that. I was just looking through random threads and when I read your last post it was really saddening Posted Image

I'm no expert so I can't really offer any good advice I'm afraid. Have you tried phoning your dermatologist? I'm pretty sure I've read that some people start on as low as 10mg so maybe that would be an option? At least for a little while until your body gets more used to it. In any case I would ring him/her up. Don't lose hope yet!

Good luck, I hope things work out ok

Edited by esa, 22 February 2012 - 10:50 PM.


#13 slowandsteady

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Posted 23 February 2012 - 12:50 AM

Hey, just thought i'd chime in

I was on 30mg a day and had to drop down to 10mg because of the side effects. I could feel them from the very first pill I took.
Like you I had spins, migraines, nausea, felt like absolute crap for 3 weeks. So horrible...

I kept taking it and now at month 5 i have virtually no side effects, although it was a very hard journey.
Have you tried making your immune system stronger?

Milk thistle, garlic, ect..??

#14 McLemon

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 04:38 AM

I don't know what to do...

I'm scared to take each tablet....but I'm also scared to let my skin ruin my life.

It's strange because the first week I felt quite OK, just a standard headache and a little icky...but nothing major.

The past few days that I've taken it, my heart has raced for around 15 minutes afterwards and my BP has felt funny. I wasn't sure if perhaps it was related to dehydration? But surely it wouldn't dehydrate me so fast.

Indeed, I take a a few vitamins etc for my immune system, including galric + milk thistle.

I'm at a loss.

#15 mathews42

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 08:37 AM

I havent been on it that long, but I feel the effects immediately - so I definitely think that dehydration could play a key. The days that Ive had headaches, I didnt go crazy with drinking water. Ive been trying to be proactive about avoiding side effects, drinking a ton of water, carmex even if lips arent chapped, moisturize legs constantly and taking fish oil. The days where I slacked with the water, were the days I had side effects. Try taking fish oil pills too (upon rec of my derm) and see if that helps. I have terrible back pain now too, but I am sticking with it bc my skin is clearing up. Keep us posted!

#16 esa

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Posted 24 February 2012 - 11:58 AM

I don't know what to do...

I'm scared to take each tablet....but I'm also scared to let my skin ruin my life.

It's strange because the first week I felt quite OK, just a standard headache and a little icky...but nothing major.

The past few days that I've taken it, my heart has raced for around 15 minutes afterwards and my BP has felt funny. I wasn't sure if perhaps it was related to dehydration? But surely it wouldn't dehydrate me so fast.

Indeed, I take a a few vitamins etc for my immune system, including galric + milk thistle.

I'm at a loss.


I could be completely wrong but if you're that worried about taking each tablet, it's quite possible that your anxiety is causing your heart to race! (my completely non-expert opinion!)

Edited by esa, 24 February 2012 - 11:59 AM.


#17 mathews42

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 08:56 PM

Did you go off it? Im curious, my side effects became unbearable also after day five - but my skin was so nice so its been a tough decision for me too! I basically have been taking it once every three days now (going to call my derm and ask to be switched to 10-15mg)