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accutane adult acne

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#1 js327

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 12:10 PM

Hello all.

 

I have never done a blog or anything but I figure I should contribute to this board since I have learned a lot from everyone on here!

 

Brief intro:   26 y/o female with acne since teen years.  Had severe reaction in high school to doxicicline.  Managed acne with topicals and birth control.  In college had a brief flareup, then had a glycolic peel which seemed to keep my acne away for a couple years.

 

The past 2 years I have had a reoccurrence of acne, which coincided with a very stressful time in my life - law school.  I have seen three different dermatologists in the past two years and determined that I am indeed allergic to all the "cycline" drugs.  Was put on Bactrin which ripped up my stomach.  I then sought out a naturopath and completely changed my diet, etc.  Then tried a variety of different birth controls.  I have now been off birth controls for 4 months.  The past 8 months my acne has continued to get worse to the point of not wanting to leave the house.  I am pretty sure it is hormonal / stress related since my skin is sooooo oily.  I even went to an endocrinologist to try to get my hormones tested but he said that I didn't have any signs of a hormonal disorder and that I will eventually grow out of acne.  He told me to wash my face more and stop wearing makeup.  haha thanks a lot.  I def will try to get my hormones tested again in the future because I don't want to have acne again once I am done with accutane and I really want to get to the root cause and stop masking the problem.

 

Finally searched for a derm who would specifically prescribe accutane.  It had never been suggested to me by any of my previous derms (no idea why not!) and I was always afraid of it.  But after extensive research, especially on this board, I decide it was my only option and that a lot of the bad rap was exaggerated.  Found a new derm locally who had accutane listed on his website, went in with a list of reasons why I should go on it, but I didn't even have to convince him, he told me to go on it right off the bat!  Went through all the crap to get it, and here I am, 3 weeks into it.

 

Current Dose

Started:  2/5 or 2/6, not really sure.  60 mg per day

 

Side Effects

The bad:  Bloody nose, Unquenchable thirst, excema on hands, irritability, fatigue, hair feels dead, loss of appetite

 

The good: significant decrease in oil production, don't have to wash hair often, loss of appetite.

 

Products  I am using:

 

Facial steamer at night

Fish oil capsules

Probiotic capsules

Tumeric face lotion mornings

Emu oil as a makeup remover

Emu oil mixed with pure aloe and manuka lotion at night for moisturizer

Biofine Act as spot treatment on red marks

Aquaphor on lips

Birth control - 1 week

 

I was of course put on birth control but since I have been off of it for so long and just got out of a relationship, I stopped taking it.  It was making my emotions go crazy and I think the accutane was contributing to that too!

 

The aquaphor doesn't seem to be doing it for the lips.  I just ordered some "bag balm", will report on that when i comes.

 

I just started adding the aloe on my face at night, and i really think it is helping with the red marks.

 

One month check up next week with the derm.  Then going to Mexico for 5 days - Derm already told me I shouldn't go, but I rarely burn in the sun naturally without sunscreen.  So i figure with a hat and SPF 60 I should be fine.  Sick of letting acne control my life!  Plus I think I will just not take the tane for the 5 days that I am there, as I have read some others on the forum did that when they went on a trip.

 

Questions for the community:  How do you quench your thirst?   I drink soooo much water and I am so thirsty, my throat is constantly dry and sore!

 

Is it weird that my derm started me on 60 mg right away?  Seems kind of high compared to what others have been starting on.  Oh yeah I am 115 lbs.

 

Thanks and good luck to everyone!

 

I will try to post pics this weekend.  with a shorter post!


Edited by js327, 21 March 2013 - 07:43 AM.


#2 js327

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Posted 01 March 2013 - 09:34 PM

Just shy of 1 month - went to the dermatologist today.

 

Before I get to that - this has been rough week!  But things are definitely looking up at the end of the week.  

 

        Side effects:

        Lots of bloody noses, painfully dry eyes.  Random dry spots on arms and legs.  Dandruff.  Excema on hands.  Lips falling off.  

        Constipation.  Unquenchable thirst.  Sore muscles.  dead hair

 

        Got  a haircut and my stylist kept going on about how dry my hair is and that I should never use a blowdryer or straightener again.  

 

          Discovered acne is a total exclusion under my insurance plan.  Spent a whole day calling every insurance company i could find.    

          apparently acne is a preexisting condition, ughghg

 

            So now I owe my derm $1000 from previous visits and they want to charge me 350$ for my monthly visits.  And my rx was $700!

 

          Starting to get appetite back and just feel more positive overall now that I am noticing an improvement!

 

 Acne update

       No new postules.      A couple mini cysts forming probably because the blackheads are trying to get out.   Face peeling has been much better.  I think I have the tane burn.

 

New Dose

Anyways, switched derms to a more affordable one.  Went today, the derm said I was on a really high dose and put me down to 40 per day, which I probably won't start till I get back from mexico.   

 

Product Update

Ordered Dans cortibalm because aquaphor is not cutting it.  

 

Got the bag balm, haven't tried it yet.  I'm not too keen on these lip treatments that don't come in a tube.

 

 Got some cortisone creme from the derm for the hand excema which is clearing up.  

 

My homemade moisturizer is working really well.

 

I read that Vitamin E is supposed to combat the dryness so I am trying that out.  
 

I have also been doing coconut oil treatments for my hair about 1 or 2 times a week.  I got some aloe vera juice and I am going to start spraying that in my hair as well.

 

Feel like a crazy person with all these products laying around, bloody kleenexes everywhere, blood all over pillows and sheets, and the humidity level in my apt from the humidifier!  Thank god I live alone!

 

 

Regimen

 

AM

Accutane 30 MG

Fish oil capsule

Probiotic capsule

MSM

Tumeric Capsule

Milk thistle and dandelian root supplement for liver

Tumeric face lotion

Shatterbox Green primer

Green Concealer

Pound of foundation and powder

Lubricating eyedrops

Lather up lips w/ aquaphor

Drink gallons of water

 

PM

Accutane 30 MG

Emu oil as a makeup remover with washcloth

Facial steamer for 30 min

moisturizing with my homemade concoction of : Emu oil mixed with pure aloe and manuka lotion and Biofine Act.

Tumeric Capsule

Vitamin D

Vitamin E

Iron Supplement

Cortisone Creme on hands for excema

lather up lips w/ aquaphor

Put neosporin up nose

Lubricating Eyedrops

Sleep with humidifier next to bed

Do coconut hair oil treatment 1 / week

 

 

 

Happy weekend everyone!


Edited by js327, 02 March 2013 - 04:09 PM.


#3 js327

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 02:44 PM

Day 26  

No Makeup (obviously!)                       photo-1.jpg


Edited by js327, 02 March 2013 - 03:40 PM.


#4 jamie o

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 05:23 PM

Hey just a heads up, MSM can cause some people to breakout. Though if it doesn't for you then its healing/calming aspect should be very useful. You can also get a prescription to treated your eczema, though hopefully you won't need to (I did just for the initial stage of getting used to the medication). Try to moiturise once or twice a day.

 

As for the dosage, most start between 20-40mg/day. Also how you talked about trying to do shorter posts, don't bother about it. If writing about your experience is a release and makes you feel better, go for it.

 

Also where in mexico are you going? Hope you have a great holiday.

 

Hopefully Accutane will clear your skin up quickly, so far it has worked well for me.



#5 js327

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 05:49 PM

Hey Jamie!

 

Thanks for the heads up about the MSM!  I started it while my acne was the worst, a couple of months ago.  It didn't do anything to help but it didn't make things worse.  I find it helps my hair grow faster and hopefully it is keeping muscle aches away!   I did get a prescription for the excema - it is working really fast.  Thanks for the encouragement, glad the Accutane is working for you!



#6 js327

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 06:06 PM

Hey just a heads up, MSM can cause some people to breakout. Though if it doesn't for you then its healing/calming aspect should be very useful. You can also get a prescription to treated your eczema, though hopefully you won't need to (I did just for the initial stage of getting used to the medication). Try to moiturise once or twice a day.

 

As for the dosage, most start between 20-40mg/day. Also how you talked about trying to do shorter posts, don't bother about it. If writing about your experience is a release and makes you feel better, go for it.

 

Also where in mexico are you going? Hope you have a great holiday.

 

Hopefully Accutane will clear your skin up quickly, so far it has worked well for me.

Hey Jamie - I just read your log.  Do you notice any increased sun sensitivity while you are playing futbol?



#7 jamie o

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Posted 02 March 2013 - 07:45 PM

Hey Jamie - I just read your log.  Do you notice any increased sun sensitivity while you are playing futbol?

Yeah a bit, though with sunscreen I was fine. Also my derm said to be careful with what sunscreen you get, some can do more damage than good while on Accutane (though it is extremely rare I think). Oh yeah, I went for a holiday to Surfers Paradise (Australia) and only the back of my neck got burnt. This is probably a better reference for you to go by, though to be fair I was not in the sun for any real lengthy periods of time.


Edited by jamie o, 02 March 2013 - 07:46 PM.


#8 js327

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Posted 18 March 2013 - 05:06 PM

6 week update

 

Dans cortibalm is amazing for the lips!!!!

 

went to mexico for 4 days - no problems at all in the sun

didn't take the tane while i was there and it was so amazing.....no bloody noses, could wear my contacts all day, didn't need to apply lotion obsessively, excema on hands cleared up and had sooo much more energy.

 

anyways, back to real life now and had a bloody nose the day I came back.

I am on 40 mg a day now

lips are much better

 

biggest issues now for me is that my hair is soo dead.  don't even wash it for a week and it looks horrible and I always feel so gross because i am never washing it.

 

and the fatigue is really bad.

 

will post pics soon

 

really hoping i only have to be on this for 4 months total, don't want to spend my summer exhausted

 

good luck everyone!



#9 Helton

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Posted 18 March 2013 - 08:00 PM

Good luck, JS! :)
 

I have a question regarding the insurance, have you ever figured out which insurance would cover for the Accutane?

In my situation, I want to get on Accutane and my dermatologist would prescribe it to me; however, the cost of it is ridiculously high, I am talking about up to 400 a month for six months.

Do you have any recommendations on insurances that I can look into?



#10 js327

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 07:18 AM

Almost 7 week update - Pics.

 

 

 

Dryness is so much better.  Don't know if its a function of the lower dose or my new obsession with my humidifier, which I run 24/7.   By the way this will jack up your electric bill around $20 / month but it is worth it to me!

 

Fatigue is also slowly improving on the lower dose.   Also, the manufacturer has changed from Clarivis to Amnesteem, so I'm wondering if this could also be the reason why I am having less dryness?

 

The only real issue I am having now is my hair!   It is like stray or hay and I haven't even washed it for a whole week!  any suggestions?

 

 

IMG_0180.jpg



Good luck, JS! smile.png
 

I have a question regarding the insurance, have you ever figured out which insurance would cover for the Accutane?

In my situation, I want to get on Accutane and my dermatologist would prescribe it to me; however, the cost of it is ridiculously high, I am talking about up to 400 a month for six months.

Do you have any recommendations on insurances that I can look into?

 

Hi Helton!

 

Unfortunately, I spent an entire day calling every insurance company in my state and they all said that Acne is a "pre-existing condition" and they wouldn't cover any prescriptions or deem office visits.

 

The only good news that I found is that Walgreens has some sort of prescription savings program that you can buy for $20 and it saved me around $120 on my last rx,  Also if you sign up for their rewards programs you will at least earn a lot of points towards other purchases.

 

Not sure what dosage you will be on, but that also makes a big difference.  My first month I was on 60 MG and the rx for 30 days was $700.  This month I am on 40Mg a day and the rx was around $300.


Edited by js327, 21 March 2013 - 07:18 AM.


#11 Helton

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 08:20 AM

Almost 7 week update - Pics.

 

 

 

Dryness is so much better.  Don't know if its a function of the lower dose or my new obsession with my humidifier, which I run 24/7.   By the way this will jack up your electric bill around $20 / month but it is worth it to me!

 

Fatigue is also slowly improving on the lower dose.   Also, the manufacturer has changed from Clarivis to Amnesteem, so I'm wondering if this could also be the reason why I am having less dryness?

 

The only real issue I am having now is my hair!   It is like stray or hay and I haven't even washed it for a whole week!  any suggestions?

 

 

IMG_0180.jpg



Good luck, JS! smile.png
 

I have a question regarding the insurance, have you ever figured out which insurance would cover for the Accutane?

In my situation, I want to get on Accutane and my dermatologist would prescribe it to me; however, the cost of it is ridiculously high, I am talking about up to 400 a month for six months.

Do you have any recommendations on insurances that I can look into?

 

Hi Helton!

 

Unfortunately, I spent an entire day calling every insurance company in my state and they all said that Acne is a "pre-existing condition" and they wouldn't cover any prescriptions or deem office visits.

 

The only good news that I found is that Walgreens has some sort of prescription savings program that you can buy for $20 and it saved me around $120 on my last rx,  Also if you sign up for their rewards programs you will at least earn a lot of points towards other purchases.

 

Not sure what dosage you will be on, but that also makes a big difference.  My first month I was on 60 MG and the rx for 30 days was $700.  This month I am on 40Mg a day and the rx was around $300.

 

Wow 700! Have you tried getting it from Costco?
I called in before and 80mg was no more than 450 for a month in there. :o
I wonder if Walgreen's reward program would be cheaper than Costco or not...

 

And I am seeing improvements on your latest photo! Congrats! :D



#12 js327

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Posted 21 March 2013 - 09:27 PM

Thanks Helton!



#13 js327

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 07:54 AM

Week 12 photo update.....still not really seeing much improvement sad.png


Edited by js327, 28 May 2013 - 07:28 AM.


#14 readytolive

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 03:05 PM

interested to see how accutane works for you I'm on it too but only a couple weeks in.

#15 js327

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Posted 26 April 2013 - 08:15 AM

so far i can tell it has decreased my oil production but i still have cysts.  i seem to be over halfway towards my maximium dosage.  3 month checkup with the derm in 2 weeks so we will see what he says.



#16 js327

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Posted 28 April 2013 - 12:53 PM

just an update on side effects,  (week 13)
 

dryness is still an issue, but as long as i obsessively moisturize, wash hair infrequently, run my humidifier all the time and try to stay at home by the humidifer as much as possible, then it is manageable, even though that is a dull life.

 

the biggest issue i am having now is extremely dry hair that I can't really do anything with and a constant runny nose.  the runny nose is the most annoying.  i cant even have a conversation without needing to blow my nose.

 

i have started rubbing coconut oil on my face before bed because the area below my nose is so dry.

 

i am also going to get my hormones tested in the next couple weeks so i can figure out what is going on there.

 

in 2 weeks i go see the derm...im curious if he will bump my dose, but from my calculations im pretty close to my cum. does.  i will check in then

 

good luck peeps.



#17 js327

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 07:27 AM

ScreenShot2013-05-28at82252AM.png

 

 

Week 16 

 

I was bumped up to 60 MG but after 2 weeks i got a really bad sinus infection and dry cough, eye infection and bloody noses.  so i took a couple days off of taking the pills and then put myself back on 60 MG every other day and 30 MG the other days.

 

So this is actually week 14 when counting the 2 breaks that I have taken.  Definitely getting better but im so sick of the side effects!



#18 js327

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Posted 20 July 2013 - 11:03 AM

Photo Updates........2 weeks to go until my 6 month course is finishedScreen Shot 2013-07-20 at 12.01.07 PM.png Screen Shot 2013-07-20 at 12.01.21 PM.png



#19 readytolive

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Posted 20 July 2013 - 06:32 PM

wow lots of improvement!! question, do you still get breakouts now that you are almost done with accutane? Im in the middle of month 4 and i still get breakouts even though a lot of my bumps have cleared up but its just frustrating bc im afraid that it will all come back once im done



#20 js327

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Posted 24 July 2013 - 08:48 AM

thanks readytolive.  Yes i still get breakouts, but it seems that they are only around my period.  i mentioned this concern to my derm and he said "well everyone gets some zits around their period".   to minimize the return of the acne i think you really have to try and find the root cause, which a lot of dermatologists are not interested in!

 

also, i have read a lot of posts from people whose acne didn't clear completely until up to like  a month after they were done with the tane.

 

i am pretty sure that my acne is hormonal and during accutane i completely changed my diet and stopped using hormonal birth control and did "Seed cycling" to try to regulate my cycle.  next i am going to get my hormones tested and see if they are out of balance.

 

good luck!






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