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Member Since 19 Jan 2013
Offline Last Active Mar 21 2013 11:41 PM

Topics I've Started

A Week Of Of Duac- 100% Clear? What's Going On?

22 February 2013 - 06:25 PM

So, I'm in a bit of a weird situation and I'm hoping that someone can shed some light on whats happening.


I've had moderate chin and cheek acne since I was 12- I'm 21 now. I decided to try birth control because other factors made me believe it was hormonal acne. The doctor prescribed me Alesse when I asked for something to help with my skin- even though now after perusing the hormonal acne forum I know Alesse is very androgenic and awful for acne. I went through a 2 week initial breakout period as expected- cysts in places I usually don't get any acne at all, my jawline and cheeks going generally crazy- my acne was almost doubled. But after a month or so my acne was really calming down, although not clear. At the time I was still using non-prescription BP 2.5% as I have been for years with little result; when I ran out I was in a pickle because I'm on a student's budget and I literally couldn't afford a new tube for a few weeks. My friend who has a dermatologist for her hormonal acne offered me a tube of Tactuo gel, which is the same composition as Epiduo (Differin with 2.5% BP) since it never worked for her. She passed on info on how to use- once at night, with a good moisturizer. At this point I'm ending month 2 on the pill. After less than a week using the Epiduo in conjunction with the pill which was clearing me slowly, my skin is dry and still hyper-pigmented but 100% clear.


So now i'm confused, though obviously simultaneously ecstatic- could Epiduo gel really have cleared me so qucikly, or did the pill just kick in? I've never had a clear day in 9 years until yesterday. I'd believe it was the pill, but there are so many Alesse horror stories and nothing good to speak of about it on this site. How long did Epiduo take to work for you? Was there an IB? What was the process like at the start? I'm wondering if I should get my own prescription for it right away.


EDIT: I meant Epiduo (Duh, silly me); changed it!

Could I Have Pcos?

20 February 2013 - 12:52 PM

When I was 12 (1 year after the start of my period) I started having intense pain around day 14 of my cycle, moving month to month to opposite sides of my body. The pain didn't come every month, but when it did it was sudden and crippling, accompanied by nausea. After an ultrasound it was determined I was getting large, painful ovarian cysts almost monthly. And that was pretty much the end of that story- I was never tested for hormone levels or given medication; I was basically told to suck it up. I'm 21 now, and the frequency and severity of attacks has diminished somewhat, but they still happen almost every month to some degree. I also have very irregular, very painful periods and although I am at a healthy weight I find it difficult to actually lose any weight that doesn't come back. And of course, i've been suffering from moderate acne on the chin and cheeks since the time I started my period as well, which has been fairly unaffected by anything but the birth control pill I just started 2 months ago.


I've been reading up on PCOS and i'm still unclear on the symptoms; it seems that PCOS cysts don't usually cause pain and i've also never had unusual facial hair or loss of hair on my head.


I know a lot of ladies here suffer from the condition, and was wondering if anyone could offer some insight. Does this sound like PCOS? Or just regular ovarian cysts coupled with hormonal acne?

Is 1 Month Too Soon To See Results From Bc?

03 February 2013 - 03:25 PM

Almost 1 month ago today I started taking birth control pills for the first time. It was sort of a two-pronged solution- I wanted pregnancy protection and hopefully relief from some of the issues i've had since puberty (painful, irregular periods, chronic ovarian cysts, and of course acne). The doctor prescribed me Alesse when I asked for something to help with my skin- she was just a clinic doctor, not a derm/gyno and in Canada where I live Alesse is actually FDA approved for treating acne.


I went through a 2 week initial breakout period as expected- cysts in places I usually don't get any acne at all, my jawline and cheeks went generally crazy- my acne was almost doubled. But flash forward 1 month (I have 1 sugar pill left on my first pack) and I'm almost clear. I went from 6-7 inflamed lesions and perhaps 10 whiteheads at a time to a few whiteheads and between 0-1 inflamed pustules at a time. My skin feels smoother and looks so much more even in texture. It's less oily as well (although i've always been combination leaning towards dry, so thats not necessarily something I needed). 


It sounds great, but my worry is that it's temporary- I know from researching Alesse after the fact that its supposed to be very androgenic and pretty awful for acne, and that the pill usually takes longer to work than a month. Can anyone give me a little insight as to how these things work? Is this period of clear skin the calm before the storm or is the pill doing good things for my hormones?


I'm 21 and fairly small (115 lbs before the pill, about 120 now) if that helps at all.


Oh, I forgot to mention that I have a 3 month supply of Alesse. I obviously plan to stick it out and see what happens, but it would be nice to have some answers in the meantime. I'm not really open to Yaz since I'm a smoker and the blood clot risk scares me, and anything high dose is unappealing as well since I managed to gain a few pounds and go up a cup size on a low dose pill and i'm a little worried about what a higher dose pill would do to me.




Is there lower dose less androgenic pills that I could try if Alesse goes south?