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Age 35: Accutane Again Vs. Photodynamic Therapy: Severe Nodular Cystic

cystic nodular photodynamic accutane

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#1 OMalleyJane

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Posted 24 June 2012 - 06:44 PM

So I am back at Acne.Org. I was here ten years ago as Arpazia and then, well, life happened. Got married. Created some wonderful new people. Underwent ablative laser treatment. Went away for a weekend with a bunch of local snobs and their daughters - - sunlight and stress brought upon new, wonderous, cysts and swelling and every day is a wonder of dried puss and ickiness.

Ever try to explain your medical history to doctors and have them completely blow you off?

Well, today, he (the doctor) finally said "oh! oh! oh!" Yes, we've been here before.

So my question to you, other adult sufferes of nodular cystic acne is any luck with the newer laser treatments?

#2 Green Gables

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Posted 25 June 2012 - 09:05 AM

Have you tried hormonal treatment? Are you on birth control, and if so, what brand are you on?

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How to Treat Hormonal Acne

Good and Bad Birth Control Pills and Implants for Acne

How to take Spironolactone

List of Doctors Who Prescribe Spironolactone

Topicals for Hormonal Acne

 

HOW I STAY 100% CLEAR:

Spironolactone (anti-androgen drug)

Betaine HCL with each meal

Avoiding silicones and occlusives in skin/hair products

 

 

 


#3 OMalleyJane

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Posted 26 June 2012 - 06:07 AM

I am on birth control. I believe I am taking Beyaz right now. This is actually due to the fact that since I had my daughter, I had fertility issues and underwent treatment to conceive my son (I am so happy they are both here) but since then, everything stopped and the OB wanted to make it start again since I am too young for menopause. The BCP has helped with my monthly hormonal cyst but what is happening now seems completely odd and different. (I know, who am I to separate all parts of my body and not look at it as a whole?) The OB basically said that this is what happens when some women take the pill for a few years. I have a patch on my right cheek of puptsules and cysts. They have been there for around 5 weeks and they just keep exploding and oozing. It is painful. It feels like I have a piece of glass under my skin.

One doctor diagnosed me with a staph infection. Another diagnosed me with Acne Rosacea. All of which leads me to believe that more and more often, dermatologists are just plastic surgeons lately and there is no science into skin diseases taking place. I found Dr. Rao Babar in Manhattan and I am going to see him next month. His profile reads well so I am hopeful. He does lasers for acne so perhaps he can give me insight as to whether I am truly against a rock and an Accutane place.

In the past month, I have taken Cipro, Bactraban, Doxycyclin and now I am on the Z-pack. I am washing with BP and putting a topical steroid on my face. The steroid makes me nervous. I am also taking a Skin Hair Nail supplement and have sworn myself to go without snaking on Poly-O String Cheese all day. Oh - - the humanity!

Still and all, it has been almost 10 years since I did Accutane and my skin has been relatively clear. This breakout is more angry but more localized. The kicker is the money I spent on scar revision just to have it happen all over again.

What is your experience with adult acne? Is it severe, moderate, light? What have you used?

#4 Binga

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Posted 26 June 2012 - 08:20 AM

http://www.acu-cell.com/dis.html chk their research. Drink mixed vegetable juice daily. Carrot, cucumber, celery, wheat grass to boost your immune system.

#5 Green Gables

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Posted 26 June 2012 - 01:42 PM

The key with birth control and acne is you need a high estrogen pill. Not familiar with Beyaz, but I'm guessing it's one of those new "low estrogen" pills that are great for normal birth control, but do nothing for acne.

Low-dose pills (Alesse, Aviane, Levlite, Loestrin 1/20, Mircette)
Regular-dose pills (Brevicon, Demulen, Desogen, Levlen, Lo/Ovral, Modicon, Nordette, Levora, Loestrin, Low-Ogestrel, Necon 1/35, Norethin, Norinyl 1+35, Ortho-Cept, Ortho-Cyclen, Ortho-Novum 1/35, Ortho Tri-Cyclen Lo, Ovcon 35, Seasonale, Yasmin, Zovia)
Phasic pills (Ortho-Tri-Cyclen Lo, Cyclessa, Trivora, Triphasil, Tri-Levlen, Ortho-Novum 10/11, Jenest, Tri-Norinyl, Ortho-Novum 7/7/7, Ortho-Tri-Cyclen, Estrostep Fe)
High-dose pills (Ortho-Novum 1/50, Ovral, Ogestrel, Demulen 1/50, Ovcon 50)

Some people like Yaz for acne, but not for its estrogen content...because it contains a derivative of spironolactone.

I almost went on Yaz, but for various reasons went on pure spironolactone instead. It's the only thing that's cleared my 10 years of hormonal acne. Took months to see results but the results seem real instead of temporary clearances that all come back on the next menstrual cycle.

I have been recommended accutane many time but all accutane does is dry up your skin. My problem was hormones, I still got cysts even when my skin was parched. So I never took accutane. Glad I did spiro instead, since it seems like all you accutaners just have to retake it anyway.

Sorry but if your new derm's specialty is lasers, he's just gonna sell you a pricey laser package. Just my prediction.

My best derm is actually not a dermatologist but the nurse practicioner for one. All she cares about is getting you clear the way you want to get clear. She has been great for me, having acne for ten years and trying everything. I politely told her I would like to try spiro and why I did, and she got me on it without a fuss.

Edited by Green Gables, 26 June 2012 - 01:48 PM.

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I don't get notified of your response to my post unless you QUOTE my post.

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How to Treat Hormonal Acne

Good and Bad Birth Control Pills and Implants for Acne

How to take Spironolactone

List of Doctors Who Prescribe Spironolactone

Topicals for Hormonal Acne

 

HOW I STAY 100% CLEAR:

Spironolactone (anti-androgen drug)

Betaine HCL with each meal

Avoiding silicones and occlusives in skin/hair products

 

 

 


#6 OMalleyJane

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 06:57 PM

Asha and Green, I am willing to try anything right now. I have to admit that the Z-Pack and BP seem to be doing something but you know how it goes - - you get your hopes up and then wake up to another flare but changing my diet and perhaps taking a hormone may help. I could use a beter diet and I don't even need birth control since I underwent tubal litigation after my son arrived. I just need to get my period. Without it, I am subject to all sorts of menopause-related side-effects including brittle bones.

(think this is environmental, y'all?)

The derm in Manhattan has more experience than any dermatologist I've been too. The reason I picked him was his knowledge dealing with serious skin diseases. I am not some teenager with acne. I am not trivializing what those teens are going through either - - I just need someone to recognize my age and listen to what has worked and what has not worked. I need someone to hear my history and care about the fact that I am scarring. I am truly hoping for an honest opinion.

And I've had two laser treatments so I am skeptical about their actual results but apparently lasers seem less damaging than Accutane. I refer to it as chemo for the skin. But in defense of Accutane, this breakout is nothing like the original breakout I had at 26. I have giant cysts the size of quarters all over my face. And it has been ten years so what was I thinking - - that I would be one of the lucky few who didn't get a serious breakout again.

#7 Green Gables

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 01:49 PM

Not to be a broken record...but really your acne sounds hormonal. I went from 40+ cysts on my face (10 years and counting) to 2 right now from just 4 months of spironolactone. So you know what my recommendation is.

I like spiro because it's mild on the body, can be taken long-term, etc. All it does is mute some of your androgen receptors so they're not attacking your skin. And it's cheaper than any medication I've been on. $10 a month.

I didn't see any long term results with antibiotics (I went on nine different kinds!), topicals, red/blue light (one of the PRICEY ones), and laser treatments. I might go back into laser treatments to treat all the scars I have left over.

Edited by Green Gables, 29 June 2012 - 02:03 PM.

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I don't get notified of your response to my post unless you QUOTE my post.

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How to Treat Hormonal Acne

Good and Bad Birth Control Pills and Implants for Acne

How to take Spironolactone

List of Doctors Who Prescribe Spironolactone

Topicals for Hormonal Acne

 

HOW I STAY 100% CLEAR:

Spironolactone (anti-androgen drug)

Betaine HCL with each meal

Avoiding silicones and occlusives in skin/hair products

 

 

 


#8 OMalleyJane

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 02:14 PM

Okay, What the heck? I'll try it.

I went to the ER today because it is spreading. The ER Doctor told me this was too big for anyone in the area and to follow-up relentlessly on Monday. It isn't that I am all about self diagnosis but you know from experience how frustrating it is when no one seems to listen. When I get in, I will bring up Spiro and find out if I can take it without it messing up my cycles.

I appreciate your persistance. I hope you're right because I feel kinda hopeless.

#9 Green Gables

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 10:51 PM

Update us on how it all goes!

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I don't get notified of your response to my post unless you QUOTE my post.

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How to Treat Hormonal Acne

Good and Bad Birth Control Pills and Implants for Acne

How to take Spironolactone

List of Doctors Who Prescribe Spironolactone

Topicals for Hormonal Acne

 

HOW I STAY 100% CLEAR:

Spironolactone (anti-androgen drug)

Betaine HCL with each meal

Avoiding silicones and occlusives in skin/hair products

 

 

 


#10 Jabberwocky80

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 04:01 PM

I definitely agree about the spiro. I'm a 32 year-old woman who began suffering from severe cystic acne due to a life-altering event when I was 27. I've tried just about everything and nothing worked. NOTHING! I found a sympathetic derm who suggested I try spiro again -- I had been on it years earlier and saw no results, but then again, patience is NOT a virtue of mine -- and upped his suggested dosage of 50 mg to 100. I told him how much I liked it and he prescribed me 100 mg daily. I also cut out milk, although I still eat cheese and the occasional ice cream, yogurt, sour cream product, etc. I originally switched to organic milk, but even then I had breakouts (although not cysts). I take doxy around the time of my cycle or if I'm extremely stressed, and I'm on Ortho-Lo, although I'd love to get off the BC.

Thursday I had a Fraxel Re:pair, which I've wanted for YEARS due to those hateful pock marks that remind me of the pain and suffering I went through. I'm very scared of the results, because of all the disappointment I've experienced over the years...over a dozen Fraxel Re:stores, IPLs, PDTs, chemical peels, microderms, etc, etc, etc. I hope I see some improvements. Let's hope for the best, shall we? Posted Image

#11 mellieh

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Posted 15 July 2012 - 11:49 AM

Please keep us posted on what your new derm says! I am in a similar situation- struggled with acne to some degree since puberty, tried "everything" from topicals (like Differin, Obagi) to antibiotics to sprionolactone (was on it almost 3 years before I gave up- some clearning, but not enough). I started back on BCP last year to combat menopausal symptoms (I'm 37), but that hasn't helped either. I am going to see a new general practicioner this week, so I'm making a list of all the things I've tried. Hoping for some new plan of action!! I am so sick of feeling bad about my skin!

Good luck!

#12 MMR1601

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Posted 28 July 2012 - 08:24 PM

I have had success with the Smoothbeam Laser. It has taken 4 treatments (spaced one month apart) but it is finally starting to work. I am not able to take Accutane or BC pills any longer due to extreme hair loss but the Smoothbeam laser disrupts the oil glands and lowers the oil production in the same manner that the accutane does-it's just more localized to the face and doesn't affect my hair like the accutane did. i never had any luck with the Spiro either. But so far I am happy with the laser results (but you do need to give it time) and I also saw SIGNIFICANTimprovement using Bion's Acne Inhibiting gel and their Bacteriostat cleanser. Hope this helps as you research lasers!