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Sarsar123

Severe Breakout, Would Love Advice With Pic - Infected?

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Hi, I'm in the uk where we have a shameful lack of accessible dermatology services in our healthcare system. I'm 32 and have cystic acne which is 100% hormone related. 7 years ago I was given roaccutane, which did work. I've done years of tetracyclines and last year given retin a gel. Nothing is working right now, and I'm in a panic. I stopped the retin a as it was so drying and it's been discontinued here, and went for more natural products such as honey, tea tree oil etc. I saw an amazing improvement on acne and scarring in 2 weeks. Then I got my period and my lower face is sore, cracked, bleeding and cystic within 2 days. I can't get an appt with a dr for a week, I'm not sure if its infected and drs here just don't know what advice to give. I don't know how to clear this myself, I'm just using sudocreme right now as its so sore, and aloe vera. All my make up is oil free. I don't have oily skin - my skin is very dry. I also notice excess chin hair recently, thick and black. I've had my hormones checked in the past and apparently it never shows a prob. I'm not sure if I should get an emergency appt if my acne is infected (can't work out how to do pic from iPhone on here)

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if you think the acne in infected go to the doctor right away i wouldnt screw around with your health ya know? if its that bad then go to the er they can give you meds for that and then when you see the derm ask for spironolactone unless you want to go on birth control pills. the only thing i can tell you for now it so make sure you keep your face very clean and dont put anything on it so no makeup or acne products that will just irritate it more. when my cysts are really painful i ice them and take a few aleve or ibuprofen. good luck and keep me updated.

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I have to go to work so gotta put make up on no way can I go without it but am careful what I use and I have like an acne beard and not one pimple on any other area of my face! I'm going to go tomorrow and say I'm worried its bacterial. Spiro isn't licensed in uk via primary care for prescription but I've read great reviews I'm just not sure how to get given it. I cannot take contraceptive pills

Thanks for your reply

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your acne doesn't look infected at all just cystic to me and its definitely hormonal. for now yeah definitley get the antibiotics they will help you until you find a more long term solution. minocycyline and doxycycline have worked really well for me but keflex is a good one too. hmm i am pretty sure they have an alternative to spiro in the uk. i think flutamide is given over there but you might want to ask them about it to be sure. i wonder why you cant get spiro there? also if it gets bad enough then you might want to think about accutane. i am currently on spiro and will start accutane in march and then stay on spiro to avoid a relapse. my derm said with hormonal acne that many times accutane can get rid of it but that it might come back so the spiro should make sure it stays away. for now get the antibiotic but don't stay on it too long since it can make your acne worse in the long run. you could also try retin-a, differin or tazorac topical too.

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Oh it went better than expected! I just cried my eyes out. She offered a seen referral but I was honest I'm not sure that's gonna help, I don't need accutane I need spiro. She said if I wasn't PCOS she would be shocked. Done bloods, have duac, fluclox and can start spiro depending on kidney function results! Urgently need my iud removed and hormone treatment. I keep crying I'm so happy someone listened. Thank you xxxx

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Sorry she offered me a derm referral, I did not accept it at this time as I do not believe accutane is the right path for me, and my dr says she can give spiro so I'm going to start there! Nervous about starting the duac, how long to see results?

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glad things went ok for you! good deal and awesome about the spiro. just a note spiro takes a long time to work. my acne is pretty much like yours and i have been on spiro almost 9 weeks but since i keep getting cysts my derm is putting me on accutane as well as keeping me on the spiro. they did say it can take 3-6 months to work so its good that you go the antibioitic to take until it kicks in. duac is exactly like benzaclin just a different name and that is what i have used for years for my acne but it does nothing for the cysts since it cant get down that far into the skin. a topical retinoid would be your best bet to stop the cysts from forming in the first place.

good luck and keep me updated!

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I tried retin a, it did nothing really but dry me out. When I can get the cysts to deflate, I just need to unblock the pore. My skin is so fragile in the areas I get cysts nowadays the often leak by themselves (blood, clear fluid). I'm just stuck for what cleanser and moisturiser to use. I'm prepared for it to take time, but really hoping I can clear this outbreak up a little at least so it's not so sore! Have u done accutane before?

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I tried retin a, it did nothing really but dry me out. When I can get the cysts to deflate, I just need to unblock the pore. My skin is so fragile in the areas I get cysts nowadays the often leak by themselves (blood, clear fluid). I'm just stuck for what cleanser and moisturiser to use. I'm prepared for it to take time, but really hoping I can clear this outbreak up a little at least so it's not so sore! Have u done accutane before?

yeah it dries me out too but i find if i start out slow then its not as bad. i just have to use a heavy moisturizer when i use my differin. i know what you mean though i had contact dermatitis for a few months and made my skin very sensitive. ugh! yeah the pain is the worst part that's for sure. i ice my cysts and it helps a lot. i also take aleve or ibuprofen for the pain and inflammation too. i use hylunia facial cleansing gel because it's super gentle and doesnt have any parabens, sulfates, dyes, fragrances etc. you can check out their website if you are interested just google hylunia. i like olay moisturizers and use the regenerist line because they work the best for me. i have found with all moisturizer that a nice thin layer is the best because too much can clog the pores too. make sure after you apply your duac you wait say 10 minutes and then apply your moisturizer because it will dry your skin out like crazy. start out slow too or you will really irritate your skin. no i have never done accutane before but at 35 i am more than ready that's for sure. i dont start until march 8th so i have a few more weeks for this spiro to kick in.

salicylic acid is good to clear out the pores too. i used to use olay regenerist cream cleanser for like 4 years until i got an allergy to salicyclic acid so i was too paranoid to try the cleanser again. it worked well for me though for so many years and its pretty cheap too.

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Just done my duac, man it's drying! Wonder if I've put too much on tho think I was careful! The only moisturiser I have that I think is the least harsh is a bio active honey and aloe vera one from a heth food shop. I'm worried its greasy tho but I googled the ingredients against the list on this website and it seems ok. I did accutane 5 years ago, it does work but I found it hard to live with, no alcohol, sun, the peeling, blood tests and stuff but I saw a very fast improvement , it didn't last long after I stopped but this is the worst my face has been in years so maybe accutane does work for a long time!

I was thinking about trying cetaphil?

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Just done my duac, man it's drying! Wonder if I've put too much on tho think I was careful! The only moisturiser I have that I think is the least harsh is a bio active honey and aloe vera one from a heth food shop. I'm worried its greasy tho but I googled the ingredients against the list on this website and it seems ok. I did accutane 5 years ago, it does work but I found it hard to live with, no alcohol, sun, the peeling, blood tests and stuff but I saw a very fast improvement , it didn't last long after I stopped but this is the worst my face has been in years so maybe accutane does work for a long time!

I was thinking about trying cetaphil?

yeah it is for sure. i find for myself the olay regenerist deep hydration cream is the only stuff i can use with my benzaclin. i tried a few other moisturizers and my face was so red and inflamed it felt like i burned it off until i went back to my olay cream. i personally hate cetaphil. it breaks me out but others swear by it. i break out from cerave too. thats nice that accutane worked for you and yeah i am dreading not drinking but you cant really drink much on spiro anyway so i am kind of used to it now. if i want a few drinks i will have them but i will drink a ton of water afterwards. i think the key with hormonal acne is staying on something like spiro or bcp for a very very long time and for me i think the accutane mixed with the spiro should be a good combo to target all the acne.

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I tried to put a pic on not sure it's uploaded

Upside down how?? Lol

do you eat pot noodles,schwartz/colemans mix in packet sauces,cup a soup,gravy granules,instant tea etc etc.

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Yes I do eat some of the packet stuff, cos low fat diet here in the uk slimming world promotes a lot of that stuff, can be eaten at work is quick, what's in it that's bad?

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Yes I do eat some of the packet stuff, cos low fat diet here in the uk slimming world promotes a lot of that stuff, can be eaten at work is quick, what's in it that's bad?

I discovered luckily that I was intolerant/allergic to E621,E330 and a few other ones,they cause my cystic spots,you can see a pic of me in my posts "instant soup",in these pics,taken recently,I was at the start of a breakout,so I made sure once again that I didn't consume anymore E chemicals,

in the past I have broke out like you,

hope this applies to you and helps,can imagine how depressing it must be for you especially at 32.comfort.gif

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Very interesting when u quoted an E number, as a kid I was allergic to one of the colourings, the yellow/orange they put in drinks, I would go crazy for hours! I tend to eat more of the precooked rice pouches you microwave, wonder if they bad? I had a mug shot on Friday before this acne got so bad. I'm gonna investigate this thanks!!!!

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Today's face, with full make up and flash

Face looks so much better already but it won't last! And I'm good at make up now! Will do one next week when antib and duac in my system I'm going to keep a log

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don't worry those antibiotics should help those cysts so try to stay positive. can you get cortisone shots at all for those? i will say it does look a lot less inflamed from your first pic.

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No have no access to anything like shots, I think the cysts will go down on their own they usually do in the end, although thru come back! I've kinda given up working on reducing scarring, it's so pointless as my acne just ruins any healing. Tonight I sat looking at my scars and red face and just can't understand how it's got so bad all these years later

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awe that's too bad the cortisone really helps get rid of those suckers. i know how you feel i was finally on a nice clear path and then my cystic acne came back in november and has been full force since. my derm had me on a few different antibiotics but nothing was working (i probably became resistant after being on them for so long) so they gave me spiro to try and then i will start accutane soon. 5 weeks after going off antibiotics i asked for another one to try and am currently on keflex and it seems to be helping thank goodness! its so upsetting to have this cystic acne and i know for me being 35 it makes it so much worse with having to go to work everyday and things like that. i have faith though that the spiro and the antibiotics will work for you. the duac should help as well so just stay positive that in a few weeks things will get better wink.png

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It's very frustrating in your 30s to still be battling this :(

Today everything is looking dry and crusty but overall better, much much less inflamed and nothing new has formed for at least 2 days now. The big cluster of cysts are flat ( scabby) and there are just 2 other deep cysts still up but they don't seem to be changing in size or look likely to pop as so deep. But still getting cystic lumps in my back, even tho I have used duac there too. I'm gonna give flucloxacillin a while to keep working I think I'm too scared to come off already!

I realise I need to sort my diet out but it's a bad cycle. I'm very down and low mood so I treat myself to cheer myself up but maybe make it worse. All over the years my diet seems to make no real difference to my skin, which is what are me think its gotta be hormonal!

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hey sarsar, how bad are the cystic lumps on your back?

Also, how long have you been taking antibiotics? Dont you think that the antibiotics could be the reason your acne is getting worse?

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Less than a week this time fir antibiotic But my history is a few years before I finally got out on accutane in 2007, and I've had 2 long lots of metronidazole due to an infection and surgery. This has caused me IBS. Then I've had tonsilitus recently so ended up on more. I don't want to be on them but have to admit the change is already drastic (will do a pic) so perhaps I've had a bacteria that's made it quite this bad. I'm planning on doing 2 weeks of the fluclox and asking to get differin cream along with bP cream. i start spiro on Wednesday too. I don't want to be reliant on antibiotics or risk more gut issues. But no I don't think it's what made it worse this time around.

The cysts on my back come to head very quickly so not very deep, they deflate quick but now leaving really dark scars.

I've been using a glycolic and sacilic acid exfoliant on my back, only occasionally on face and this also helps.

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