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epiduo extreme dryness

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#1 caringmom

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 08:28 PM

I'm so glad I found acne.org. My 15-year old son has been suffering from mild to moderate acne since he was 12. He was using the Pro-active regimen, but I think it was too complicated for a young boy and I'm not sure he ever really used it correctly. It started getting much worse a couple of months ago, so I took him to a dermatologist and she prescribed Epiduo. He's been using it for about a month, and his face has never looked worse. Additionally, the skin around his eyes is swollen, red and painful, and the skin at the corners of his mouth is cracking. She also told us to use Aveeno moisturizer, and to expect that his face might get worse for a couple of weeks. We were ready to abandon Epiduo altogether this morning; my son had a breakdown (his first over acne) and my heart just broke for him. He is the only one of his friends who has acne like this and he has been putting on a brave face until today. The part that really got me was when he said "I'm going to have this until I'm 24!" (sad news he found out when I asked the dermatologist how long acne that starts with puberty usually lasts)

Anyway, after spending the better part of today reading so many posts here, I do think he should stay on Epiduo for now, but with some changes. Of course it would have been nice had our dermatologist shared this info with us (you know, for the $200+ the visit cost!), but thank you all for sharing your stories, experiences and advice. I plan to take before and after photos of him to share here with his permission. He is such a beautiful person, inside and out, as are all of you.

Regimen Changes:
  • Switch the Epiduo from every night to every other night (after his face heals a bit). The derm told us to start out once a day and work to twice. That will NEVER happen with him; it's just too harsh for his skin.
  • Decrease amount of Epiduo. Everyone here says to use only a pea-sized amt. for entire face. He's been using more like a small grape.
  • Stay far away from mouth and eyes - my fault here, I assumed he knew not to put around sensitive eye skin. He also go it on his ear lobes and they are peeling.
  • Get rid of the Aveeno and use Cetaphil moisturizer. Aveeno lists 2 different types of alcohol in ingredients! Talk about irritating. Add 5 drops of pure jojoba oil to moisturizer each time.
  • Stop using salicylic acid face wash. Switch to Neutrogena foaming wash.
  • Ask doctor about antibiotics to help calm his initial breakout.
I plan to report back after a couple of weeks to let you know if this helps. I have high hopes for the Epiduo as so many people here reported good results. Everyone says "Don't give up!" I hope to be adding my voice to that chorus soon. Many of you said give it 2-3 months, so I will try to keep him hanging in there.

P.S. I also had mild/moderate acne as a teen/young adult so I understand how he feels. I was able to make mine completely go away with birth control pills. Today he said, "Mom, your acne was NEVER this bad." He is right. I HAVE to help him.

#2 jmcsm

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 08:41 PM

Its nice to see a parent so concerned about their child's skin. Kudos to you. Good luck with the regimen! It looks like you are going the right way. Try not to get the Epiduo near the eyes or mouth. I believe like any benzoyl peroxide treatment, it will dry out your lips if you get it too close. And you are right to reduce the BP. The dermatologist should have warned about the effects of the treatment and how to apply it properly. It is possible that if he started with a pea sized amount once a day from the beginning, he could tolerate the treatment.

Unfortunately, acne can last longer than just 24. As can be seen from our adult acne part of the forum. This forum is a great place to share concerns, experience and ideas. Welcome to the community!

#3 liz90210

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 10:17 PM

I am 40 and just solved my acne issue this year. I have been to derms all of my life and tried almost everything including accutane. What I realized for me is that this is an internal inflammation issue....in my case I was allegic to gluten/wheat. Once I stopped eating gluten/wheat my skin was and is perfect. You can read many stories on here about diet. Gluten is the cause of a lot of acne For some, cutting out gluten does nothing for them. What I will say is that to determine if gluten is the issue you must stop all gluten, you can not "cut back" to tell if this is the problem. Google "gluten free" and they will tell you what you can and can't have. The other trigger for many is sugar and dairy (especially milk).

I would also look at vitamin supplements. They can interact with some meds including heart medication so as always I would ask a dr. Over the counter I take vitamin A, E, C, zink, Bromelain (the enzime in pineapple), and vitamin D. I also drink green tea and ginger tea. I hope this helps. No derm will ever suggest a food allergy....you can try these methods along with the topicals and see what happens. I will say that if gluten is the issue you will know right away...in days. I would give it a good 3 weeks to be sure, everyone is different. Good luck!

#4 Coppedsynergy999

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 11:29 PM

Its nice to see a parent so concerned. Damn I wish my parents had given a damn haha. Ok, heres what I know. Stay away from DAIRY! This is big mamm. Pregnant cows milk is the last thing a kid needs with his already raging hormones. I think so far what you are doing sounds pretty good. Try to get to a point where your child needs NO moisturizer. I find they make the problem worse. Another helpful tip is washing your face with water only while blotting with a microfiber washcloth. I find foaming cleansers to be absolutely unnecarry and can make the problem worse. All you want to do is remove the sebum while preserving the acid mantle in the skin so.
Wash face with warm water while blotting with a microfiber washcloth to remove ALL sebum.(buy 10-15 washcloths so you use a clean one everytime)
Apply epiduo to clean skin.
See by not washing with a foaming cleanser your child will have healthier skin. I find that cleansers are a scam, and I bet 70percent of people with acne would benefit greatly by washing with water only. The problem lies with makeup and you need a cleanser to get that off.
Cleaners dry you out and then you need a moisturizer!! The companies know this so they try to get you hooked. Plus foaming cleansers have sneaky ingredients that clog the pores. Done believe me? Read the ingredients and look them up. Water is safe. Then use your prescriptions. While avoiding dairy. I bet he will clear up completely.

Let me say it again. STOP USING CLEANSERS. I completely cleared my persistant acne by washing with water only and then applying my topical treatment.

You must also be aware that drugs like epiduo will intially make things worse. I would deff. get him on minocycine for a SHORT PERIOD. This is key maam. A short course of antibiotics to get this breakout under control will help him IMMENSLY. I was in the same boat as your son but had absolutely nobody who even gave a crap at all. I just want to pass this information along to help someone else.

I am knowlegable of this to the point I could write a book and have even considered becoming a derm. PM me if you need more help.

#5 jmcsm

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 11:39 PM

Agreed that diet can play a very huge role in acne. Check out the holistic section of the boards. There are a lot of success stories from there.

#6 makeveli2

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Posted 26 February 2012 - 11:44 PM

i am a 16 year old boy who last year had moderatly severe acne, i was perscribed epiduo and the first three months was hell (initial breakout), but it completly cleared my skin after, looking back i would use bactrim for the first three months as it WILL kill all acne, find a good moisterizer that reduces redness, and use manuka honey as a face wash because one, it works extremly well and two, when you have a harsh chemical like epoduo you dont want to be adding any more irritants to the skin that will put up oil production make his face red and break him out, it will work trust me you can look at those items in the reviews section on this website. good luck, i know it sucks.

#7 caringmom

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 07:46 PM

Thanks to all who replied here. I think there are so many great suggestions. Since we are 3 weeks (I checked the calendar today) into the Epiduo and apparently his symptoms are "normal", especially since he was overdoing the amount of the medication and not using moisturizer as he was supposed to, we are going to stick with this approach for at least five more weeks unless it gets a lot worse. Makeveli2, your post was especially encouraging! If it turns out the Epiduo doesn't work, then we definitley have some other things to try regarding diet, aestheticians, etc. Made the call to derm's office today to get scrip for antibiotics for the short term to help with his initial outbreak. Oh, and he's been taking Vitamin D3 and fish oil for a few months, but I got 50mg zinc tablets yesterday to add to the supplements. Will keep encouraging him to avoid sweets, candy, sodas, etc.

#8 katiekins

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 02:14 AM

This is so amazingly refreshing to see a mom here who is so caring. My parents have never known how to help me so its the whole, "just learn to accept yourself how you are" speech and then i deal w it alone for the last 5 years. And i dont mean to sound like a pity party, but more just an encouragement and praise to you for caring and taking intiative.

#9 collegeboy84

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Posted 28 February 2012 - 03:42 PM

Good to see a mom who cares. If his acne is really that bad, and if the "pimple genes" are in the family, I would not hesitate to put myself on Accutane. A young, male usually can handle any adverse effects of the drug as its usually pretty mild from personal experiences between me and my friends who were on it. For a woman I find it to be a little more complicated due to the chances of pregnancy. Cetaphil soaps and moisturizers are the way to go. His peeling is probably from using way too much for I had the same problem when I was 15. Though I must say, it is pretty funny that he put it on his ear lobes! Posted Image Someday he will be able to look back and laugh at it. Builds character! Good luck to you and your son.

Edited by collegeboy84, 28 February 2012 - 03:44 PM.


#10 caringmom

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Posted 04 April 2012 - 01:19 PM

So we're about two months into the Acne.org regimen now, and there is definitely improvement! I did ask for the antibiotic prescription, but once I looked up what she prescribed on the internet, the side effects were frankly very frightening. So much so that I did not even bother to pick up the scrip. So that may be why progress is somewhat slow, but at least we don't have to worry about NEVER going out in the sun! The new pimples are still happening, but they tend to be fewer and larger, rather than a whole bunch of smaller ones. The old acne is now pretty much flat red spots, giving his skin a little bit of a pitted appearance, but I believe it will heal up almost completely over time. I purchased the trio of products from Acne.org and that's what he's using. Even after this many weeks, his skin is still very dry (since moisturizing is the last step, that is the one that gets "forgotten" more than any other) so I may have him try the jojoba oil exfoliation I read about on this web site. I'm thinking maybe the flaking skin is what could be causing the new pimples at this point, but Dan is so adamant about being 100% gentle that I haven't had him try any type of exfoliation. Hopefully if he does it, it won't make it worse. Collegeboy84, Accutane is still on the table, but only if we don't see significant results in another few months. We tend to be more on the "natural health" side of things and the Accutane side effects blew my mind. I am glad the drug exists, but I think it should only be used in extreme cases and I don't think he qualifies. Neither did the dermatologist (although she might have if she had seen him after two weeks on the Epiduo!). Once he started The Regimen he stopped the Epiduo completely (his choice, not mine) because he was so unhappy with what it did initially. Maybe if he had stayed with that he would be clearer now, hard to say. I hope you are all doing well! We have been documenting with photos and when he is finally happy with how his face looks he says we can post the series. We are already laughing about the earlobes when we look back, but that poor skin around his eyes. It just never dawned on me that he would put that harsh stuff on the most tender skin of his face! Question: have any of you had luck clearing your acne just using Dan's Regimen? If so, do you really use THAT MUCH benzoyl peroxide? Also a footnote: I am getting a little bit of "sympathy acne" (doesn't really seem fair to get pimples in your 40s!) so I've been using The Regimen, but not using SO much of the products. It seems to be helping a lot. And the concealer products are so much better now than when I was a teenager.

#11 GingerBelle

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Posted 26 April 2012 - 09:57 AM

Wow, I wish my mom took such an interest in my skin and the effects acne have on your life. She has had perfect skin her whole life so she just doesn't understand. The other day I showed her a really bad breakout on my back and told her I wanted to see a derm, and she just said "ouch" and walked away. Hope everything works out for your son! And your an awesome mom! :)

#12 Green Gables

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 01:00 PM

How much vitamin D-3 is he taking? Is it in softgel form? My doctor says that you need to supplement with at least 10,000 IU a day in softgel form (hard tablets won't be absorbed by the body) to see an effect Vitamin D levels (and his skin).

Vitamin D-3 is a "pre-hormone" and affects your body's ability to regulate inflammation. It is a big key to acne. See this article: http://lighttherapyo...min-d-and-acne/

Also, I third the recommendation to cut out dairy. Completely. No milk, cheese, yogurt. It's hard but there are SO MANY STUDIES that show a link between dairy and acne in people who are already acne-prone.

Edited by Green Gables, 03 May 2012 - 01:04 PM.


#13 free falling

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Posted 07 May 2012 - 04:12 PM

he really needs you in his life i can tell you that. I'm also a teenager and I don't have someone like you to do some of the stuff you do like make dermatologist appointments. good job.

#14 Verica

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 03:10 AM

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#15 caringmom

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 03:54 PM

Update. It's been a lot of months, but other medical issues have come up in our family so I haven't had time to post even though I've wanted to. After some improvement with the regimen above, my son's face started getting worse -- like a lot worse. So it was back to the dermatologist, and she (along with a friend whose son also had acne) convinced me to at least try the doxycycline for him. As I've read pretty much everywhere, it's not an instant cure. I heard 3-6 months, and that was about right. As long as he took his pills faithfully, his face started looking really good, with just minimal outbreaks. That lasted for a few months. But around the holidays he started having major outbreaks that continue to persist, and now he's starting to also break out on his back, shoulders and chest. I am personally monitoring to make sure he's taking his proper dosage and he is.

 

His diet definitely suffered over the holidays (can you say sugar, chocolate and processed carbohydrates?) but since then he's focused on eliminating candy (again), plus drinking a TON of water, eating a couple of oranges each day and taking 2000 IU of vitamin D plus fish oil daily. We eat mostly organic food, and minimal processed food. And still the acne is getting worse. I've always felt like his acne is directly tied to hormonal bursts of activity, and I believe he is on another "developmental spurt." He's not so much growing up anymore as filling in, and turning from boy to man. At any rate, I'm now thinking it might be time for Accutane, even though I HATE the thought of all the side effects. He is of the opinion that "if it will make the acne go away, then let's do it" but he's also willing to wait a while longer to see if the doxy kicks in and takes care of the issue again. One possibility I came across is antibiotic resistance. It's apparently pretty rare, but it does seem strange that the doxy was working really well, to the point that he really didn't even have to watch what he was eating, but then it suddenly wasn't. I would love to hear any of your experiences with doxy or accutane and whether they worked for you (and how long). Thank you!



#16 txngrl

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Posted 30 January 2013 - 05:33 PM

Hello!  Wow, you sound almost EXACTLY like me...   I'm also a mom of a teenage son w/acne.  I just joined this site a few days ago because I am so so sooooooooo tired of trying everything under the sun to help him, and worrying about him on a daily basis.

 

My son is 13 (almost 14), with pretty severe acne and oily skin.. Well I think it's severe for his age.  He has every type of acne- blackheads, whiteheads, cysts, pustules, clogged pores, etc.  I'm sure he inherited it from me.  I have suffered with acne and oily skin since I was very, very young... like 5.  No kidding.  Finally, as a teenager, my mom took me to a derm and I tried Tetracycline + Retin-A.  I think it helped for awhile, but then it stopped working and the acne got worse.  I finally went on Accutane at the age of 16.  I don't remember details like how long I was on it, but I DO remember that for me, it was a life-saver.  It cleared my face and gave me back some of the self-esteem that had been so destroyed.  I am 43 now, and yes my skin isn't perfect... I still have scars, oily skin, blackheads and some manageable acne.  I'm also a busy mom, so I'm sure I don't take good enough care of my skin.  My point it, the Accutane made a big difference for me... it was the ONLY thing that got my acne under control.  It has been 27+ years since I took it, and I have experienced no serious side effects.  HOWEVER, I completely agree with you about not wanting to put your own kid on it.  I feel the exact same way.  I keep thinking about it, then I remind myself of all the horror stories and health problems that people have experienced from it.  I almost feel guilty for even considering it for my son.   Just like your family, we eat mostly organic foods... minimally processed, no fast food, no dairy, little to no gluten.   I am very holistically minded and I seek out alternative health care whenever possible.  BUT, if it comes to Accutane, I suppose we will try it for my son.   In the meantime, I am trying all the natural things I know to do.  Right now he's on Vit.D3, Vit.A, Vit.K2, among other supplements.  I'm going to take him soon to get his blood tested for Vit.D levels.   I'm sure he's deficient. 

 

Also, last year I took him to a derm for the first time.  She looked at him briefly, spoke with us for 5 min. or less, and then proceeded to write a prescription for Doxycycline and Epiduo.  We tried them.  The Doxy didn't work... but maybe we didn't give it long enough?  We gave it 6 weeks.  The Epiduo seemed to help at first, then it fried his skin and left very raw, super dry, painful patches that I thought would never heal.

 

So I know how you feel... I have the experience of bad acne myself, so now watching my son go through it really hurts me.  I think about it every day, and I'm always looking for ways to help him.  His friends don't have acne.. or if they do, it's very, very mild.   Tell your son there's another boy out there who knows how he feels, who knows what it's like to be "that kid with the bad skin" while all his friends and peers have virtually perfect skin.  Oh, and to make it worse, they all eat total junk!!!!   It is SO not fair.   I am re-living the nightmare...  sad.png



#17 John Smith06

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 04:14 AM

PLEASE try Paula's Choice CLEAR system before trying Accutan! Accutane is a SERIOUS drug, and I know people whose faces are PERMANENTLY messed up because of the drug. Paula's Choice products work because they're effective, gentle, and not irritating. As for hormonal breakouts, benzoyl peroxide will NOT work. BP kills bacteria. You need salicycic acid to reduce the inflammation and unclog the pore, causing the acne to diminish. Paula's Choice sells amazing BHA products, especially her BHA 2% liquid. PLEASE try this--it worked wonders for me, and I promise you don't need to go to that extreme to find a cure.



#18 txngrl

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Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:28 PM

PLEASE try Paula's Choice CLEAR system before trying Accutan! Accutane is a SERIOUS drug, and I know people whose faces are PERMANENTLY messed up because of the drug. Paula's Choice products work because they're effective, gentle, and not irritating. As for hormonal breakouts, benzoyl peroxide will NOT work. BP kills bacteria. You need salicycic acid to reduce the inflammation and unclog the pore, causing the acne to diminish. Paula's Choice sells amazing BHA products, especially her BHA 2% liquid. PLEASE try this--it worked wonders for me, and I promise you don't need to go to that extreme to find a cure.



I'm not familiar with Paula's Choice but I'll look into it, thanks. How severe was your acne? And about how long did it take to see results? And the people whose faces are so messed up now b/c of Accutane, what do you mean by that?

I believe there is something systemic going on internally w/my son, deep down. Something in his body is not right, is very out of balance. I know his hormones are raging b/c he's a teenager, but I think it's more than that. Not knowing what is wrong w/him may be more frustrating than the acne itself. It's not just a superficial, surfacey problem w/him that can be fixed w/something topical. But yes, I do know how dangerous Accutane is, which is why I haven't let him go on it. However, there comes a point when one becomes desperate. :(

#19 John Smith06

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 02:47 AM

PLEASE try Paula's Choice CLEAR system before trying Accutan! Accutane is a SERIOUS drug, and I know people whose faces are PERMANENTLY messed up because of the drug. Paula's Choice products work because they're effective, gentle, and not irritating. As for hormonal breakouts, benzoyl peroxide will NOT work. BP kills bacteria. You need salicycic acid to reduce the inflammation and unclog the pore, causing the acne to diminish. Paula's Choice sells amazing BHA products, especially her BHA 2% liquid. PLEASE try this--it worked wonders for me, and I promise you don't need to go to that extreme to find a cure.



I'm not familiar with Paula's Choice but I'll look into it, thanks. How severe was your acne? And about how long did it take to see results? And the people whose faces are so messed up now b/c of Accutane, what do you mean by that?

I believe there is something systemic going on internally w/my son, deep down. Something in his body is not right, is very out of balance. I know his hormones are raging b/c he's a teenager, but I think it's more than that. Not knowing what is wrong w/him may be more frustrating than the acne itself. It's not just a superficial, surfacey problem w/him that can be fixed w/something topical. But yes, I do know how dangerous Accutane is, which is why I haven't let him go on it. However, there comes a point when one becomes desperate. sad.png

 

My girl friends who have had Accutance have extreme discoloration on their faces. One's face is a significantly lighter shade than her neck, and her skin tone is so uneven, she has to wear makeup everyday, and refuses (to the best of her ability) to let people see her without it. Another girl experienced dramatic hair loss, which was so disheartening, because although her acne is reduced (not gone), she has another problem. Whereas acne usually gets better w ith age, unfortunately hair loss usually doesn't.

 

 

My acne was mild to moderate, but my brother had severe acne, and he tried Proactiv, Epiduo, Benzoyl Peroxide from the drugstore, and nothing worked for him. I put him on Paula's Choice CLEAR line and within 3 weeks he saw drastic improvement. I even called the company's number to get product recommendations for me! What I like about Paula's Choice was that their all about using science to guide the way their formulate products. In other words, if science says X, Y, and Z are beneficial to the skin and W may be irritating, they would be sure only to include X, Y, and Z, leaving out W. This is quite different from big drugstore companies (like Clean and Clear, etc) that literally slap their name on a new products every few weeks and don't investigate ALL of the side effects of the  ingredients they put into a prodcut's formula. Simply put, Paula's Choice is great at treating skin EFFECTIVELY but also GENTLY.

 

I did hundreds and hundreds of hours of research into skincare, and literally everything this woman says is true. She uses published academic research to determine the best ingredients to put in her products. She steers clear of things that are irritating and have no benefit to the skin (like peppermint or menthol, for example). And best of all, her products worked for my family. I really suggest you call them (their number is on their website which you can find when you google them), because they're so nice, and they usually send free samples out to people who are new to their skincare line. The CLEAR acne kit they have cost my brother about $15-20 I think, so it's not too expensive.

 

Also, a note that dermatologists are great at treating skin diseases, but they're not so on top of skincare per say. I think that the dermatolgist you have may be fighting the acne with too strong ingredients which is aggravating it and getting it more inflamed. The products I used from Paula's Choice (CLEAR cleanser, CLEAR BHA Extra Strength, and 5% Benzoyl Peroxide) actually helped calm down the inflammation from the acne, and THAT was crucial to solving the problem. If you do go ahead with the Paula's Choice products, I would recommend just using those products and temporarily stopping all other thigns like prescription creams or other cleansers/soaps, etc. This would give you a good idea if just those products you tried were effective or not.T

 

This is the regular strength 2-week acne trial kit:   http://www.paulascho...Week-Trial-Kit/

 

 

This is the extra strength 2-week acne trial kit (a bit more effective but may be drying):    http://www.paulascho...ngth-Trial-Kit/

 

 

Please keep us updated on your son's progress. I wish him the best!


Edited by John Smith06, 02 February 2013 - 03:03 AM.


#20 OldogNewTricks

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Posted 10 February 2013 - 05:44 PM

Hi,  we are parents of 2 girls (our first is age 20) and our youngest is 14 so we know exactly where you are at. We have been on this site all day since joining this am after reading some really touching posts. Some background first, my husband's side of the family has a history of acne; moderate to severe. My wife's side has very mild acne. We are both hispanic so the hyper-pygmintation is an issue b/c we have darker skin. As to us as adults and for our children, we tried EVERYTHING out there for our acne. Rx lotions, Ointments/antibiotics/home remedies, i mean everything! Nothing worked. With that being said, here is what we can tell you about our experiences for our children who took and are currently taking acutane: IT WORKS! But, you and your son need to educate yourself about this drug and the range of possible side effects. Yes, they can be severe, but for us, it seems the norm is dry skin, lips, sore joints, back aches, off/on again rash/ inability to focus sometimes and the dreaded IB (initial break out!). We think for a healthy young boy like yours, he would take these side effects in a heart beat to clear his acne. 

 

Here are our thoughts: 

 

1. Research accutane on this site and get facts about what to expect. here is the link to the page to read first before taking acutane.  i wish we would have had this web site when my oldest took acutane. http://www.acne.org/...ge-information/   THIS IS A REALLY IMPORTANT LINK! READ IT! UNDERSTAND THE CALCULATIONS!

 

2. After you read the do's and dont's figure out what is the best time period to start. Duh, my 14 yr old just started her 5 month course in Nov 20 2012 and this is really important. For example, she had to take a private school entrance exam in Jan and we never figured the acutane could affect her ability to focus. So make a 5-6 month plan when to take it.

 

3. Make sure your dermatologist,  not a regular DR, knows their stuff! Acutane is based on the cumulative intake; your body weight is what determines how much you can take. KNOW WHAT YOUR INTAKE SHOULD BE! If your derm doesn't discuss this in length with you plus any possible increase or decrease in dosage that you can take during a course of acutane because of side effects, FIND A NEW DERM!

 

4. SIDE EFFECTS.  Each person varies. For our girls, my 14 yr old is in good health, weights 50kilgrams (you need to know how to convert) and is on 40mg of acutane for a 5 month course. She is very athletic; she plays club volleyball and this is intense! Here is what she is experiencing: Extremely sore knee joint pain; back pain; initial headaches which went away; on going rashes on elbows and hands; and we believe an inability to focus like she could before starting acutane (hence, time it with what is happening in school). Dry lips and eyes (she wears contacts), dry body. Nobody tells you this, but your skin becomes really tender and sensitive; like babyskin so be extremely gentle (you don't wash a baby with hot/harsh products!). FOLLOW THE REGIMEN for washing; 10 seconds to wash and no more; very gentle foam cleanser AND USE NO OTHER ACNE PRODUCTS! Your skin cannot handle it. 

 

 

We just answered some questions from another blog and i am sure  if he goes on accutane, you will be asking these same questions.

 

1. YES there will be an initial breakout (IB). My oldest daughter didn't have one but my 14 yr old after 3 months continues to have good and bad days. So expect things to get worse before they get better. i have read it can take up to the entire course before it kicks in. Patience is the key here but this drug works. As you can see, we researched as much as possible for our kids and if they should take this drug. We are the ultimate overprotective/helicopter parents and if you are informed, this drug will work. We would never give our kids this drug or allow them to continue taking it if we saw some of the severe side effects that are possible; you as a parent need to do your homework and closely monitor your child while he is on the medication.

2. As to the hyperpygmintation/scaring, for my 20 yr old, WOW, as best as we can recall, after 6 months, she was 100% clear and the skin soft as a baby's bottom.Today, at age 20, you would never know she ever had any acne; her skin is so beautiful. as parents who suffered acne, it makes us feel so good that we could do this for her. BUT, we will say, years later, we discovered the accutane could have been the cause of migraine headaches (lasted 2-3 months) and a bout of depression (2-3 months). keep an eye out on his behavior and anything out of the ordinary, remember he is on accutane and nobody knows for sure how it works and all of the possible side effects. 

 

3. Your son's course of treatment, figure it out with him using the link above. Once you know how the dosage works, it will empower you and calm all the fears associated with the risk of the drug. We strongly recommend that you question your derm, a 4-6 month plan seems to be the norm. Here's the issue: The shorter the course, the higher the dosage. The higher the dosage, the likelihood of more severe side effects. For example, I don't think my 14 yr old could have handled a higher dose than 40mg. b/c of her athletics and the joint pain it causes; hence a 5-6 month plan. Only your son and you know how much of the side effects he can handle, if the initial does causes too many side effects, reduce the dosage and extend the time. We started w/ a mid level dose and if necessary you can build up; that's what we are considering for months 4&5 for our 14 yr old. Her 1st mo was w/o food, this meant about a 50% absorption rate; thereafter she took with food. That's how it's supposed to be taken with food. We think our derm knows what he is doing b/c 1st mo at 50% w/ later increase in mos 4-5. will get her the cumulative amt she needs. He knew she was exerting herself with sports so he factored in the first month w/o food and it allowed us to figure out how to deal with the joint pain.

 

4. Remember, each person varies and it takes time to build up the cumulative amt in your body for it to work; have patience b/c it is worth it! But, you need to do more research on this site; for example  when our 20 yr old suffered from depression 18 months after taking it; we never made the connection until years later with the help of websites like the one DAN THE MAN has made here. It is a serious drug, but if taken with proper medical derm advice and educating yourself of the wide range of effects it can have, you can do this for your son!

 

We have to tell you, when our older daughter comes home from college to visit, she tells us how she is often complimented on her skin and what she does for it; her friends can't believe she had acne and how accutane worked for her. Its amazing to us how some people still have never heard of this drug for acne treatment. Believe us, and all the blogs on this site, it can be life changing. read the blogs and good luck to you and your son if u go for it!