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Spironolactone Questions - Please Help!

spironolactone side effects weight gain bloating estrogen dominance tired

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#1 SoftFocus

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 04:02 PM

Hello,

I hope you guys can help me because my doctor is not helpful at all and I am getting very depressed.

 

I am 32 f, and have been on spironolactone (the brand they sell at walgreens) for the 3rd month now. I originally went on it because I was feeling very hormonal all the time, emotional, depressed, and getting bad breakouts at least twice a month with scarring. 

well, since I started it I have been feeling worse. I gained weight, I'm always bloated and moody, I can't even have the energy to exercise, I sleep more (not good with my busy schedule). Plus, I had hyperpigmentation and cholasma on my face before starting, and now it seems to have gotten a bit more dark. My acne was getting slightly better, but now it's back to square one. It seems to improve a bit when I cut out gluten and dairy, but now it's back to where I was before spiro.

I have seen an endocrinologist and dermatologist. My tests came back normal (dhea was on the high-normal range, and i think so was testosterone), but I was told I could combine metformin and spiro, and I chose only spiro because I don't like taking too many drugs. I told my dermatologist that I don't feel very well on spiro, and he said "you are not supposed to feel 100 % better, you are taking medication" and just told me it's normal to feel this way.

I started with 25mg for the first 2 weeks, then increased to 50mg...I was feeling worse with each increase. I get the same feeling on birth control pills, and I always gain weight and feel depressed. 

 

Here are my questions:

 

1. I am a small person, even with the weight gain, is it possible that my body can't even handle the 50mg? Is it possible for small women to clear on just 50 or 25 mg, or is it one of those drugs were more is more?

2. Do I have to take this drug until I hit menopause, or has anyone come off it and the acne never returned? 

3.Is it possible I have estrogen dominance? Metformin is more for that, right? Can I combine anything herbal with spiro instead, or is it risky?

4. At 3 months, shouldn't I at least be seeing some improvements? If I have been feeling bad for 3 months, is there any chance of me feeling and looking better? 

5. My husband tried to cheer me up by getting me a giftcard for a facial. I used to love getting peels and photofacials with red light, but would that be too much for my skin now that I'm on spiro? I read something about contact dermatitis and photosensitivity with spiro, so should I stay away from red light and peels?

 

Please help me! I am at the end of my rope here, and I don't even know what my backup would be if I quit spiro, it was the only thing I hadn't tried for hormonal acne and it's failing me. 


Edited by SoftFocus, 28 November 2013 - 04:24 PM.


#2 brenmc

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 02:29 PM

You could try metformin alone. Some ladies on the "SoulCysters" site have said their acne improved on metformin (if it's not severe). It is also very unlikely to cause weight gain. However, it can result in stomach issues.



#3 paigems

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 12:38 AM

1. I could not even handle 25mg but I did clear up from that dose after about 6 months.

 

2. Your acne will come back if you stop taking it.

 

3. Yes I think so. I am not familiar with it.

 

4. My acne was not gone until after 6 months.

 

5. I'm not sure about this.

 

Spiro didn't work out for me, but thankfully there are other options. Changing my diet has worked great for me.



#4 cocoskin

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 02:13 AM

Thank you for e-mailing me.

 

 

 Cocoskin      


Edited by cocoskin, 02 December 2013 - 12:06 PM.


#5 maria199

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 12:27 PM

1) it's possible, when i was heavier 75 mg would break me out, now 100 mg cause break outs of their own!

2) if our hormones don't settle down we will continue to have acne.. sad.png

3) i can't really help about that, i don't know..

4) there are persons here who saw improvements after 5-6 months or even more so don't worry yet ( i know it's hard, i can't stop worring). Your mood may improve after your skin clears-it's wonderful what a nice face in the mirror can do.

5) i did laser treatments for facial hair without problem but since you had chloasma before you should ask them. In fact cloasma is often hormone (estrogen-progesterone) related and even though i am not expert i am not sure that spiro is a good option -it makes sense that it will darken it more and if you have estrogen dominance i think spiro won't help a lot but i repeat i am not an expert.


What clears my acne:

Spironolactone 100 mg + limiting dairy

indoxyl (duac) gel + aha + baby brush for comedones.

3hnd.jpg


#6 SoftFocus

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 06:09 PM

Thank you for your replies. I have a friend who is also on spironolactone but she seems to tolerate it much better. I read that spironolactone and some antibiotics (which i was on before spiro) can make you more sensitive to the sun and UV light, that's why I was worried. When I was taking antibiotics, I noticed I was getting some small black spots every time I'd go out in the sun, and I don't want the same thing to happen with spiro. I love going to the beach and gettin sunshine, and I read on these boards that vitamin D really helps with acne. Even my useless dermatologist told me to get some sun each day for the vitamin D. he said it's much better to get it from natural sources than supplements, but he never told me if I have to be careful with sun exposure while on spiro. 

I guess spiro stops working once you get off it, right? So those who have success with spiro should keep taking it indefinitely? 



#7 cocoskin

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 12:02 PM

Soft focus,

 

You stated that you had or still have hyperpigentation..so why are you going to sit in the sun which will only make the hypepigmetation worse(darken, and also damage your skin.....hense the use for BROAD SPECTRUM SUNSCREEN UVA/UVB PROCTECTION!  There is a reason why people take Vitamin D supplements. Using the sunscreen will  protect your skin  from the sun's rays. And yes, some antibiotics will cause sensitivity to sunlight. 

 

As for acne medication.  If you discontinue them more likely the acne will re-occur.  That is just how it is.  There is NO cure for acne. Acne can be managed, treated and controlled if you use the right products (usually found by trial and error since everybody is different).

 

There are factors which play a big role in Acne. Hormones, hereditary factors(genes), diet, health problems, just to mention these.



#8 jlcampi

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 03:17 PM

Hello,

I hope you guys can help me because my doctor is not helpful at all and I am getting very depressed.

 

I am 32 f, and have been on spironolactone (the brand they sell at walgreens) for the 3rd month now. I originally went on it because I was feeling very hormonal all the time, emotional, depressed, and getting bad breakouts at least twice a month with scarring. 

well, since I started it I have been feeling worse. I gained weight, I'm always bloated and moody, I can't even have the energy to exercise, I sleep more (not good with my busy schedule). Plus, I had hyperpigmentation and cholasma on my face before starting, and now it seems to have gotten a bit more dark. My acne was getting slightly better, but now it's back to square one. It seems to improve a bit when I cut out gluten and dairy, but now it's back to where I was before spiro.

I have seen an endocrinologist and dermatologist. My tests came back normal (dhea was on the high-normal range, and i think so was testosterone), but I was told I could combine metformin and spiro, and I chose only spiro because I don't like taking too many drugs. I told my dermatologist that I don't feel very well on spiro, and he said "you are not supposed to feel 100 % better, you are taking medication" and just told me it's normal to feel this way.

I started with 25mg for the first 2 weeks, then increased to 50mg...I was feeling worse with each increase. I get the same feeling on birth control pills, and I always gain weight and feel depressed. 

 

Here are my questions:

 

1. I am a small person, even with the weight gain, is it possible that my body can't even handle the 50mg? Is it possible for small women to clear on just 50 or 25 mg, or is it one of those drugs were more is more?

2. Do I have to take this drug until I hit menopause, or has anyone come off it and the acne never returned? 

3.Is it possible I have estrogen dominance? Metformin is more for that, right? Can I combine anything herbal with spiro instead, or is it risky?

4. At 3 months, shouldn't I at least be seeing some improvements? If I have been feeling bad for 3 months, is there any chance of me feeling and looking better? 

5. My husband tried to cheer me up by getting me a giftcard for a facial. I used to love getting peels and photofacials with red light, but would that be too much for my skin now that I'm on spiro? I read something about contact dermatitis and photosensitivity with spiro, so should I stay away from red light and peels?

 

Please help me! I am at the end of my rope here, and I don't even know what my backup would be if I quit spiro, it was the only thing I hadn't tried for hormonal acne and it's failing me. 

Acne is primarily caused by elevated free testosterone and secondarily by insulin (food).  

 

You could be estrogen dominant if the primary source of the androgens is your adrenal system (typical).  To know what's going on you need blood work.  Ask your doc to order:

 

LH

FSH

Estradiol

Progesterone

SHBG

Total Testosterone

Free Testosterone

DHEA Sulfate

Cortisol 8am

 

Get lab work on the 21st day of your cycle.  You start bleeding on day 1.