So today is the day that after alot of consideration i start accutane. Mainly making this log for my own benefit so i can track stuff easier down the line but maybe it will be of use to someone else on here so here we go!
Acne runs in the family. My mum especially had a big battle with cystic acne right through her teens to early twenties. So it was no surprise that i have problems with Acne. I have had it ever since i was 12/13 which was just teenage spots which i controlled with over the counter Oxy/Clearasil stuff. It escalated and by the time i was 14/15 i was dealing with large under skin mosqutio bite spots which i found hard to control. I then went to the doctor and was prescribed a large number of antibiotics/topicals/washes which never did the trick.
I managed to get this under control at 16 as i found a skincare routine that worked for me. I took Lymecycline daily and I coated my face in Benzoyl Peroxide (Panoxyl) and then put moisturiser over the top. Twice a day. This made my skin very dry but manageable. This kept me clear but maybe once a month i would get a large spot which was under the skin still big. Just dealable. I went to a NHS dermatologist about this “one big cyst” pattern in 2009 but he just said my face was fine.
It was all fine and i carried on doing this until i was 20. My acne had calmed down so much that i didnt have to keep taking lymecycline i could just do the routine once a day. Then in April 2012, I noticed that instead of just one every once in a while more and more big cystic spots were coming through the routine and it wasnt having as much effect as it was before. I went back to the doctor to get back on antibiotics and was put on Doxycycline to help.
Then probably the best timing in the world, Panoxyl was then discontinued in May 2012. So i went cold turkey and everything was fine for a few weeks until my acne progressively came back worse and worse which i tried to control naturally/ with over the counter products until in September my acne was so bad that i went back onto the original skincare routine i did initially. Ordering a Panxoyl alternative from america (acne.org regimen)
This routine now for some reason my skin wont respond to and isn’t helping like it did previously. It just makes my skin really red raw, itchy and dry, because of that my acne is still just getting worse and worse. Its like for some reason my acne has developed and is now majority all under skin but all over my face.
I lead a very active lifestyle. I cycle to work every day and walk around all day when i am at work. I workout 4-5 times a week and my diet reflects this. Because of how i want results from the gym i eat a very clean diet with plenty of meat and clean vegetables. I have tried cutting out Dairy and Gluten to no avail. I never eat fast food and completely avoid sugar as a rule of thumb except in fruit. I have good hygiene and shower regularly but only wash my face twice a day to reduce irritation.
It has really affected my self esteem and i wake up in the morning dreading what i have to deal with today. I dread going outside and facing people or seeing friends. With a trip to the hairdressers or the convenience shop being something i have to build up a load of confidence to do. Work has been a nightmare recently and i find myself segregating myself from everyone in an empty office. My job is very public and circles around being very confident and good at dealing with newpeople which is difficult when i have no self esteem. There have been times when i cant actually wear my hat at work because of my acne as it causes me so much pain.
- I missed an award ceremony i was due to attend at work because i didnt want to get up on stage infront of a crowd to accept my award and then deal with a camera.
- I grew a beard to hide my jawline area as best i can
- I avoid my friends/people in general trying to stay inside as best i can
- I recently passed all of my assessments for my dream job and will be starting in May. This is a childhood dream which i am not excited about at all because i am dreading starting with this face and not to be able to be as confident as i normally am and excel as i should do.
- Colleagues/friends have noticed a change in my behaviour, im not the outgoing/ confident/chatty guy anymore. Just the guy who stares at the floor and excludes himself.
Here is everything that i tried that i can remember prior to going on Accutane
- Acne.org benzoyl peroxide
- Oxy on the spot
- Neutrogena on the spot
Natural side of things
- Tea tree oil
- Green tea
- Every face wash/moisturiser under the sun.
So i decided i needed to get this under control so i could get my life back, after venting to family i realise how much of an obsession my skin had got to and how big of an impact it was having on my life. I was basically hinging around skin quality day to day. So i went back to the GP who just wanted to put me on topical Zineryt, even though this did nothing for me previously and refused to give me an NHS referral as i had one previously 3 years ago. So i saved up some money and decided to go to a private dermatologist (UK) which for me was a big step. I walked in and she was really nice had a brief chat with me and then immediately recommended Roaccutane and was severely annoyed the NHS had refused it for me 3 years ago. She thought it was ridiculous i was spending life savings on clearing my skin, as i dont have insurance, so referred me to herself on the NHS. She let me start the treatment there and then and handed me my prescription, asking me to get some bloods done through my GP in the next week or so. So i only had to pay £300 for the consultation and initial round of meds which for me is a bonus as i was expecting it to be near to £1500.
So today is Day 1 i just took my first pill this morning and we shall see how it goes! I am planning to continue doing the regimen for the first week once a day using minimal BP just to minimise the dreaded initial breakout and to overlap the two courses of treatment.
I am on half dose for the first 2 months, 20mg twice a day (40mg ED)
Roll on clear skin!
I have tried to find a picture of my skin to add to the beginning of the log but didnt take a picture. Instead i have attached a picture of my skin just before Accutane when it was at its worst. may not look too bad because of rubbish webcam pictures but at this point all the red marks are big under skin cysts. I could wear a hat at work and couldn't even raise my eyebrows without causing a considerable amount of pain.