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Horrible Cystic Flareup

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My son has been on Accutane for a month. He was on 20mg and started 40 yesterday.

The perfect storm happened tonight. He hasn't been feeling well since Thursday. Nothing horrible, just a really bad cold. The rest of his school seems to have either the flu or strep or some kind of crud.

Tonight he felt sick at dinner and ran to throw up. After he did, one of the cysts on his cheek inflated! He was in a lot of pain and obviously really scared.

I called the doctor and got a full mailbox. A little while later, he saw I called and called me right back. How is that for service from a doctor on a Sunday night? Anyway, he told us to keep warm compresses on it and come see him first thing in the morning. He told us to keep him out of school tomorrow - he doesn't want him getting sick.

After a month he is starting to really dry out. I feel so bad for him and my heart aches to see him going through this.

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I feel for you and your son for what he is going thru. I know its of no consolation but accutane is going to bring all that stuff to the surface during his initial breakout. What was his acne like before accutane? Was it severe/cystic which what appears to happening now? I was only on accutane for 2 months as my blood test results werent condusive for me to continue. However, I did go thru that initial breakout part, and started like a week in and lasted til my 60th day when I was forced off the med. I experienced the same thing happen to me; large cystic spots that left some significant scarring.

Possible the doc can prescribe an antibiotic or prednisone (steroid) for him to get thru this rough patch w/o going off the meds.

Good luck


Morning: Cetaphil cleanser, apply Sodium sulfacetamide

Evening: Cetaphil cleanser, apply differin, wait 1/2 hr, apply aczone as spot treatment.

Not overally exciting w/ the results

Also Has Seb Derm and been using Oxistat in beard area in the mornings. Same, nothing special about the results


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He was like this from the start. The avatar photo of him was day 1. He is on an antibiotic and is starting probiotic pills today. I would be so upset if he had to stop treatment because if his bloodwork. You must have been devastated.

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I was, but to be honest, since I had such a bad initial breakout, my pores were relatively clear and I was able to maintain a mostly clear complexion w/ just topicals. My theory, and I dont have any proof to support it, was that since all (most) of my pores were clear from this initial breakout, the topicals were able to their job much more effectively. If the pores are so clogged, the meds from topicals are unable to fully do their job, which is why topicals alone never did it for me. But who knows. I had 3 successful years after that w/o any worries, yet here I am, back lurking around these parts.

Anyway to the point at hand: if your son was severe cystic to begin, he should be prepared for it to get worse before he starts to heal. It sucks, but the nature of the beast. Easy to say but much more difficult to live thru. Just know that he is probably on the best med for his condition. Success rate is high; but he may have to do another course if it comes back. Like anything else, it works for many but not for some, but as I said, I think it is the best thing you can do for him at this juncture.

And 1 good thing to consider, you are getting this addressed now while he is young. Accutane may knock this out for the rest if his life. Had I been on Accutane when I was his age, instead of when I was 34, I may have saved myself countless scars from dealing with for over 25 years.

Best wishes.


Morning: Cetaphil cleanser, apply Sodium sulfacetamide

Evening: Cetaphil cleanser, apply differin, wait 1/2 hr, apply aczone as spot treatment.

Not overally exciting w/ the results

Also Has Seb Derm and been using Oxistat in beard area in the mornings. Same, nothing special about the results


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The good news is that there is a school trip to DC next week for three days that my son opted not to go on (he's already done it), then he has the entire week off. I am hoping that if things are going to get really bad that they will get bad during that long stretch while he is out of school.

I think your theory sounds...sound. That's sort of awkward. Anyway, I'm hoping that nothing bad comes back with his bloodwork and my son can remain on the Accutane until it does it's magic.

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Ironic; I had a very bad cystic breakout on a college class trip to DC. Went to all kinds of museums, landmarks, even sat in a Supreme Court Case. Sadly I have no details of anything that happened that weekend as all of my thoughts were consumed w/ my appearance. :(


Morning: Cetaphil cleanser, apply Sodium sulfacetamide

Evening: Cetaphil cleanser, apply differin, wait 1/2 hr, apply aczone as spot treatment.

Not overally exciting w/ the results

Also Has Seb Derm and been using Oxistat in beard area in the mornings. Same, nothing special about the results


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Apparently, my son punched some kid in the face today. He told my son to take some medicine to get rid of his ugly ass herpes and he punched him. There was nobody around and the kid took off in the other direction. I can't believe it's coming to blows.

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i totally can relate to what your son is experiencing, I have cyst which are similar in size to his. I get weird stares in the public from strangers, when in the bus people sit away from me. I too feel like punching them.

Sometime i just wish i didnt had a job so i could just hole up at home and not see anyone.

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