To all the beautiful people here (yes, we're beautiful regardless of acne):
I'm a 26 year old guy who had great skin till 6 months ago. All of a sudden, with no change in diet, I started getting pimples. Not just the tiny ones that disappear but the deep, scarring ones including a cyst (something I never had before). To add to that, some of the breakouts that healed naturally left lots of (15-20) PIH marks. Anyway, after ignoring it for a few months (big mistake), thinking it would just all disappear with a good diet, I bit the bullet and went to a derm. He's one of the most respected and qualified derms in my city and he didn't mince his words. 'You've got a severe case of acne, and the only real solution is Isotretinoin'. The cause for my acne was emotional stress, since I've eaten chocolates and drunk loads of milk in the past with no real breakouts. So there began my isotretinoin journey. My first appointment with my derm was on 2nd December 2013, and here's my story so far.
Month 1: Antibiotics (Doxycycline) for 20days, followed by Minocycline for another 20 days. Then I began 20 days of Accutane and Doxycycline. Controlled acne somewhat but still continued to get pimples. Got 1 cyst which was injected with cortisone. Went down but left a red mark. This was the time I also began Spectra laser treatments for my deep acne marks aka post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. The first laser didn't make much of a difference to my skin at all. But my fingers were crossed!
Month 2: Sotret 10mg. 20 days on it, not much difference. Not even drying of lips. Bad headache, neck and back pain but I think it had nothing to do with accutane since I remember spraining my neck while working out. My derm almost took me off it until I told him about the muscle pull. Then he was convinced it wasn't the Isotretinoin. Thank God, I didn't quit at this stage! Did my second laser treatment. Marks got a tiny bit lighter, but nothing to write home about yet.
Month 3: Sotret 20mg (10mg after lunch, 10 after dinner). Dryness kicked in, with lips being constantly dry. Got 1 cyst, and the derm injected cortisone which flattened it in a few days. The mark still remains, although it is fading well. Blackheads and whiteheads from my nose disappeared completely. Lips began to normalise after 10-15 days. Got my third spectra laser treatment. Marks DEFINITELY did lighten according to most people who saw me, including the derm but when you're monitoring these marks daily you tend to not notice much of a difference. I continued to get a couple of pimples here and there but they were not the kind I used to get earlier. Smaller and would dry up fast. Did get one bump next to one of the hyperpigmentation marks but the surrounding skin is white which makes me think it's collagen growth and my skin repairing itself, not a pimple. Anyway, the bump is almost gone.
Month 4 (current) month: Sotret 30mg (10mg in the day, 20 at night): Been only 14 days on this dose, so not much change yet. Dryness seems normalised, and there's no oil on my face. One pimple on each cheek but they dried up in a few days.
So not counting the antibiotics month, I've been on Sotret for around 56 days. Apart from the back pain (which was really painful but quickly disappeared with painkillers), I can safely say that there have been no side effects. While I don't mean to discount the experiences of those who did get a lot of side effects, I believe that many of these are hype or your mind playing up. I have not even suffered a nosebleed. However, I must add that I am an extremely positive and grateful person, and simply believe that this medication is safe and effective for me. Trust me, being happy goes a long way in curing your skin problems. Also, there's a lot of talk about not doing laser while on accutane but there's NO research that supports this theory. Anyway, my derm believes it's safe to do the specific laser I'm doing (Spectra) even when on Isotretinoin. Also, if anyone is undergoing laser and feels their marks get worse and much darker after treatment, don't freak out! This is completely normal since the pigment comes to the surface. The marks will look lighter only 1-2 weeks after treatment.
I will continue to update you all every few days so that more people on Isotretinoin can benefit from reading this. I believe Sotret is no longer available in the US ( I live in India) due to some manufacturing issues, but my derm believes it's safe and effective. He did give me the option of switching to another brand, but since I haven't experienced any major side effects from Sotret, I'm happy to continue on it. Although I'm sure that regardless of brand it's all the same thing. Moreover, my derm himself said that he suffered from horrible cystic acne and he was on a super high dose of Sotret. Nothing seems to have happened to him, and he's got a thick head of hair! And his skin is flawless, which makes me super hopeful that I will get there soon too. Post accutane, my derm will be doing Fraxel for the really stubborn marks, but there's still time for that.
While I'm sad that my skin went from great to this in just a few months, I know many people here suffer from greater acne issues. God bless us all, and I truly choose that no one suffers from acne EVER. I will write soon, and meanwhile, please feel free to ask me as many questions as y'all want on this thread. I'll be happy to reply.
Love to all
P.S. I'm a model, and in a superficial profession like mine, good skin is mandatory. While makeup can cover everything, nothing beats a naturally good complexion. I hope we all get there super soon!
Edited by RohPas, 23 March 2014 - 06:53 AM.