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Acne - SSRI link


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#1 souvenir

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 11:37 AM

Today I was at a review appointment with my Derm and we had a long chat about things. She happened to ask me what medications I was on and when I told her I was taking SSRIs, and have been since I was 17 (something which is now not recommended for under 18s). She thought that there was a link between prolonged acne and the taking of SSRIs, but wasn't sure about this.

Well, tonight I looked this up and it appears that there IS a link between the two - acne being one of the side effects of SSRIs.

Coincindently I started to reduce my SSRI dosage last year, about the same time I started on Minocin MR and my acne has been gradually getting better. Only now it has become clear that it could be to do with both taking the Minocin and reducing my SSRIs.

So, if anyone's taking SSRIs you should consider that these have been known to cause acne amongst alot of other skin conditions.

I'm going to stop taking my SSRIs tomorrow and I'm never going to take them ever again. Hopefully it will be evident that these have been the cause of my prolonged acne.

#2 QualityAssurance

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Posted 02 May 2006 - 10:32 PM

QUOTE(souvenir @ May 2 2006, 10:37 AM) View Post

Today I was at a review appointment with my Derm and we had a long chat about things. She happened to ask me what medications I was on and when I told her I was taking SSRIs, and have been since I was 17 (something which is now not recommended for under 18s). She thought that there was a link between prolonged acne and the taking of SSRIs, but wasn't sure about this.

Well, tonight I looked this up and it appears that there IS a link between the two - acne being one of the side effects of SSRIs.

Coincindently I started to reduce my SSRI dosage last year, about the same time I started on Minocin MR and my acne has been gradually getting better. Only now it has become clear that it could be to do with both taking the Minocin and reducing my SSRIs.

So, if anyone's taking SSRIs you should consider that these have been known to cause acne amongst alot of other skin conditions.

I'm going to stop taking my SSRIs tomorrow and I'm never going to take them ever again. Hopefully it will be evident that these have been the cause of my prolonged acne.


When I was on SSRI's.. and I was on a few my skin was better then it is now and I haven't touched that stuff in about a year and feel 10x better. I think because acne is so common any drug that you take people will say it caused it even tho there is no relation

#3 helpacne

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 07:13 AM

Souvenir,

I really wish you'd reconsider. Yes, acne is listed as a possible side effect of SSRIs, but it's an extremely rare side effect. You said yourself that your doctor wasn't sure, and you're basing your decision on internet research, which will basically tell you that anything can cause you a terrible death!! My doc doesn't see a connection (and neither do I, when I think about when my acne flared vs when I was on meds). Maybe your derm is thinking of some meds for manic depression. I've heard that lithium often causes acne. Your improvement is mostly likely due to the Minocin. If you insist on going off of your medication, please taper off properly. Quitting cold turkey will plunge you into a hell you just don't want to experience.

By the way, I'm not preaching...just sincerely wanting to help. I had to stop taking my antidepressants recently because I'm trying to get pregnant, and it sucks. I'd hate to think someone would have to suffer for no reason.

#4 Mrs Jenkins

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 08:12 AM

QUOTE(helpacne @ May 3 2006, 08:13 AM) View Post

Souvenir,

I really wish you'd reconsider. Yes, acne is listed as a possible side effect of SSRIs, but it's an extremely rare side effect. You said yourself that your doctor wasn't sure, and you're basing your decision on internet research, which will basically tell you that anything can cause you a terrible death!! My doc doesn't see a connection (and neither do I, when I think about when my acne flared vs when I was on meds). Maybe your derm is thinking of some meds for manic depression. I've heard that lithium often causes acne. Your improvement is mostly likely due to the Minocin. If you insist on going off of your medication, please taper off properly. Quitting cold turkey will plunge you into a hell you just don't want to experience.

By the way, I'm not preaching...just sincerely wanting to help. I had to stop taking my antidepressants recently because I'm trying to get pregnant, and it sucks. I'd hate to think someone would have to suffer for no reason.



Do you work for the drug companies or smthg?

Once many years ago I went on Prozac. It put me in a hypomanic state and I gained serious weight. I initially lost weight, but after a couple months I started gaining. No, this was not due to suddenly becoming a food addict/sloth. Now I am back to my high school weight with no effort so it was definitely from the SSRI. My skin did start getting worse at this time. One of my good friends even asked me in the car if Prozac causes pimples because she noticed a difference.

The depression I had was very mild. If I had known what side effects I'd get beforehand, I would have never agreed to take that junk.

Now it is known that weight gain is very common on SSRIs, Paxil being the worst. Some doctors are even calling it 'Pack it on Paxil'. Just thought that was funny.

#5 helpacne

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 08:55 AM

No, I do not work for the drug companies!

I never said that SSRIs do not cause significant side effects. They most certainly do. I've had similar experiences to yours. I tried Prozac many years ago and it made me beyond edgy (not really hypomanic, but I know that can happen), and Paxil made me pack on the pounds. Lexapro was the best one for me. It varies person to person. Anyway, all I said was that acne is not a common side effect, and if you can post a link to a study that says it occurs with a frequency that is anything close to the frequency of hypomania or weight gain, I encourage you to do so.

My main point is that the person who started this thread should seek advice from the doc who prescribed the meds as well as a derm who actually can present an opinion with certainty. They would know better than we do.

I should point out also that we don't know how severe this person's depression is, so dismissing meds as "junk" might not be the best advice. Unfortunately, sometimes a person has to go through several meds to find one with the best effect and minimum side effects. It's just like acne or anything else.

By the way, since you had to start your post by attacking me and asking if I work for the drug companies, I should ask you if you're a freakin' Scientologist or something. Take these vitamins and call me in the morning!

#6 souvenir

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Posted 03 May 2006 - 11:18 AM

QUOTE(helpacne @ May 3 2006, 06:13 AM) View Post

Souvenir,

I really wish you'd reconsider. Yes, acne is listed as a possible side effect of SSRIs, but it's an extremely rare side effect. You said yourself that your doctor wasn't sure, and you're basing your decision on internet research, which will basically tell you that anything can cause you a terrible death!! My doc doesn't see a connection (and neither do I, when I think about when my acne flared vs when I was on meds). Maybe your derm is thinking of some meds for manic depression. I've heard that lithium often causes acne. Your improvement is mostly likely due to the Minocin. If you insist on going off of your medication, please taper off properly. Quitting cold turkey will plunge you into a hell you just don't want to experience.

By the way, I'm not preaching...just sincerely wanting to help. I had to stop taking my antidepressants recently because I'm trying to get pregnant, and it sucks. I'd hate to think someone would have to suffer for no reason.


Thanks for your advice and opinion, helpacne.


I have been tapering off anyway from last year. Just with the doctor suggesting this and also some internet sites listing acne as a side effect (as a pharmacist also told me in work too) I thought that it was good time to stop completely. I've been on SSRI's for the last 8 years and really don't want to take them anymore.

Plus, there are many other side effects which I'm experiencing related to SSRIs and I KNOW are related to SSRIs.

Today I feel fine and have no withdrawal symptoms, which is a good thing.


#7 Clear At Last

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Posted 04 May 2006 - 02:45 AM

souvenir,

My situation is similar to yours. I started taking SSRI's when I was only 16 years old. I had acne before the SSRI's, but it got worse when on the meds. Now, many, many years later, I am still taking them, and I have to follow a strict regimen to supress the acne. So, maybe SSRI's aggrevate acne, who knows.

I wouldn't recommend SSRI's to anyone, unless absolutely necessary. They do not help a 100% and they are notorious for having certain side effects: weight gain, extreme tiredness, headaches, (temporary) impotence and MUCH MORE. Bad stuff... eusa_sick.gif

#8 souvenir

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Posted 04 May 2006 - 11:34 AM

QUOTE(Clear At Last @ May 4 2006, 01:45 AM) View Post

souvenir,

My situation is similar to yours. I started taking SSRI's when I was only 16 years old. I had acne before the SSRI's, but it got worse when on the meds. Now, many, many years later, I am still taking them, and I have to follow a strict regimen to supress the acne. So, maybe SSRI's aggrevate acne, who knows.

I wouldn't recommend SSRI's to anyone, unless absolutely necessary. They do not help a 100% and they are notorious for having certain side effects: weight gain, extreme tiredness, headaches, (temporary) impotence and MUCH MORE. Bad stuff... eusa_sick.gif


Yeah, I had acne from when I was 15 and started taking SSRIs when I was 17. I think that the doctor found it strange I still had active acne, although not as bad, 10 years later.

I totally agree with you about not recommening SSRIs, bad drug and maybe did work for me in the beginning but I'm fine now most days.

It's funny though because if my skin cleared up I'd be less anxious, and if SSRI's do aggrevate acne and that's what I was taking for anxiety.........