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25 mg, 50 mg or 100 mg of Spironolactone.
Calcium sulfate dihydrate, colloidal silicon dioxide, croscarmellose sodium, crospovidone, hypromellose, lactose monohydrate, magnesium stearate, peppermint flavor, polydextrose, polyethethylene glycol, povidone, pregelatinized (corn) starch, sodium lauryl sulfate, titanium dioxide and triacetin.
Items marked with orange can be irritating and over-drying, especially to acne-prone skin.
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Background - I have PCOS, which is now under control thanks to diet and exercise (meaning, my testosterone which was in the high range years ago, is now in the normal range on all blood work, my TOM is regular and I ovulate every month). Still, some of the effects of PCOS, such as facial hair growth and cystic acne, had remained. The acne has gotten much much better, but would still pop up every now and then. I also have very oily skin. My dermo recommended spiro every time I saw him, and said there were basically no side effects. Even though my skin was decent, compared to how it used to be, I read the reviews and thought, why not try it and have absolutely perfect skin for the first time in my life?
He put me on 50 mg for the first 2 weeks, then upped it to 100 mg after that. For the first two weeks I broke out a little, tiny little whitehead type bumps, but nothing major. As soon as I upped it to 100 mg I suddenly had giant cystic eruptions everywhere on my face - my chin was the worst, it genuinely changed the shape of my face because the bumps were so large. I felt like Cyclops. I also broke out on my cheeks, where I had never broken out before in my life. And none of these pimples ever came to a head, so just giant painful bumps which took many weeks to go away.
I went back down to 50 mg, which didn't help, so I went down to 25 mg and the giant pimples stopped forming immediately (still took a while for the ones I already had to disappear). I read all the reviews about how you have to give it time and it gets worse before it gets better and I decided to try again, this time only going back up to 50 mg. Immediately I broke out in tiny little white bumps all along my temple into my cheeks. It almost looked like an allergic reaction, it was so so bad. Makeup did nothing to hide it either. I stopped spiro altogether, and it went away almost immediately.
It has now been 3 weeks since I've taken spiro and I haven't had a breakout since. I have some scarring which I'm working on, but for me, this drug was the opposite of a wonder drug. It may be that if I had kept taking it, I would have eventually had the clear, soft skin of a newborn, but it wasn't worth going through months looking like Cyclops to get there. The only positive I can say about this drug is that my skin was not oily when I was on it. It didn't get super dry, just stopped it from being oily, and the pores on my nose did look smaller. But for me, it wasn't worth it. My hormones are not out of balance, based on my last few blood tests, so maybe this works better if you're in a stage where your hormones are out of wack?
One final note - when I went off spiro, I immediately started spotting. So it can mess with your cycle a bit.
Spiro changed my life. It has changed my skin and confidence in ways I never thought possible. I can actually go somewhere without foundation now if I need to. I do still prefer wearing foundation when I can because of some scarring and uneven coloration, but knowing that I don't absolutely HAVE to is so liberating. I used to not even enter a grocery store without makeup on. A GROCERY STORE. That's how dibilitating it was. I would put makeup on immediately after a shower or right before bed so that my own boyfriend wouldn't see my skin. :/ My skin controlled my life, but now I am free. My skin is not perfect, but it is a million times better...and there are days when it looks downright amazing. I still have mild scarring, some redness (that I've always had), and blackheads, but it is overall so much CLEARER! I will occasionally get isolated pimples here and there, but NO MORE BREAKOUTS!!! And no more deep, painful, monstrous cysts!!! For a year and a half now I've had wonderfully low-maintance skin. One spiro a day and a good moisturizer (Clinique Redness Relief for me) after showering and I'm set. When I shower I use Cerave Foaming Facial Cleanser, but to be honest, I don't even wash my face aside from when I'm showering anymore. I can get away with falling asleep in my makeup and my skin is still clear!! I don't do this intentionally, and maybe if I didn't at all my blackheads would be even less noticeable (lol), but I'm just saying the fact that I CAN is incredible. My skin is clearer, my routine is little to no maintainance, and my confidence is through the roof. It's amazing going to sit down at a restaurant and not even think about my face. I am so happy and so fearful of the day I have to stop this medication.
**note: Spiro DID make my skin absolutely god awful at first. I thought it was bad before, but after starting this drug it was horrendous. I read these reviews beforehand though so I knew that this was a possibility and I think being prepared helped me push through it. It took a good 3-4 months before I started to feel clear and confident. I know that sounds like an eternity to wait but believe me, the end product makes that crappy waiting period look like a microscopic smudge in the grand scheme of it all. You can do it!! It is so worth it!!!!
I had high free testosterone, which was the culprit in causing cystic acne. It is a miracle drug for women. I have been taking 100 mg daily for the past 3+ years and have seldom, if ever, had breakouts. It does cause dry skin and hair but that is to be expected as it cuts down oil production significantly. It has a long half-life which means it takes a few weeks to work but is worth it. BE SURE to quit taking it asap if you are planning a pregnancy as it causes feminization of the fetus. The drug gives me hives but that's an easy fix with antihistamines (half hour prior to taking Spironolactone). As another reviewer put it, I too dread the day when I have to quit taking it.
I knew I had a serious problem when I started staring at myself in the mirror trying not to cry. I hated what I saw, 27 year old with the face of a pubescent teenager. I never struggled with acne, so when the painfully large cysts started lining my jaw I was confused. These stay for months, always there, and then start migrating their way to my cheeks. I've had the occasional blemish on my forehead, nose, and chin.. but never my cheek; also those blemishes actually had an expiration date.
Like I said before, I knew I had problem when my own reflection was painful to see. I'm not a vain person, but I didn't like who I was becoming, obsessive. Everything revolved around it; what I ate, where I went, who I let see me, and how many hour wasted searching for cures.. and how much money spent on them.
Aright, so, on with my review.. I started with birth control, Zovia 1/35E. I lot of people haven't heard of it, but maybe they should. That time of the month- pshh.. it's a breeze now. No weight or mood changes. It helped with smaller blemishes, but not the results I was hoping for. Finally, I decided to seek out a professional. Not sure why I didn't run to find a dermatologist first.. maybe because I was ashamed of how much control it had on my self-confidence? I was prescribed Spironolactone 50mg to help with the cystic acne taking over the lower half of my face.. and also to help another problem caused by increased levels of androgens- dark thick hair on my chin that arrived with the acne, which I was too embarrassed to even bring up. My doctor brought up that subject. I was also prescribed a topical cream, Onexton. I was scared of the topical, after waking up after using it the first night, my cheeks were red and hurt like a they had been burned. I spread out my use of it and slowly made my way to being able to use it nightly (PEA size amout for the entire face!). Over three months have gone by and I'm amazed. No, my face is not 100% clear, but the months old cysts are finally disappearing, no new surprise cyst party lining up long my jaw and no more self loathing. I know I just shared a lengthy and unnecessary story, but it feels good being able to discuss it, and hopefully give hope to people suffering the emotional and physical pain accompanied with acne.
This drug is finally what worked for me! I have had acne since I was 10 and in the past 4 years I was getting big, painful cystic pimples around my mouth and jaw that would never seem to go away. They were always worse right before my period, therefore hormonal, and didn't react to any treatments. I had tried EVERYTHING, including BCP, and spiro was my last hope before taking accutane (which freaked me out due to side effects - also, I was skeptical about accutane working for hormonal acne).
Anyways - the first 3 months I started taking 100mg a day of spiro and i became very dehydrated - my period started coming every two weeks. My skin did not seem better but I knew it would take time.
I then reduced my dose to 75mg and made sure to drink A LOT of water (because it does make you dehydrated). My period still seemed to be coming more often than usual (once every 2/3 weeks) but my acne final started to be getting better. My pimples would disappear a lot faster and didn't seem as deep and painful. As annoying as it was to be getting my period so often, I felt it was worth it to (hopefully) get rid of my acne.
Now, I continue to take 75mg/day and my period has regulated to once a month. My acne is 99% improved - I get 2 pimples before my period and am clear the rest of the month. My self confidence is so much better and my skin looks great!
I would definitely recommend - but it does take a bit of time - around 4 months I started seeing results.
I started on Spiro at 50 mg a day 3 months ago. After 2 months we upped the dose to 100mg/day and added Yaz. After 6 years of relentless, scarring, hideous, cystic acne I have been totally cyst free for nearly 3 weeks. The increase in dose and addition of Yaz was the breakthrough I needed to finally cure my acne! I have had a total of 3 tiny pimples, gone in under 48 hours since upping the dose and I cannot be happier!
I have been on spironolactone for 1 year 3 months. I have gained 22lbs in total while being on this medication. I know its the medication because nothing changed in my every day routine. I stopped spiro about a month ago and already I've notice I lost a few pounds. I was on the 100mg. I will say when I was on the 50mg I didn't notice the weight gain, so maybe it's the increased dosage, but either way its such a struggle. I don't want to be fat with clear skin, nor do I want to be skinny with cystic acne. I'm on Natazia birth control pills, and so far 2 months its not doing it alone, so I may have to try something in addition to that, just don't know what.
Background: I had struggled with mild acne throughout my teen years. However, when I turned 18, my acne became severely cystic. It was getting to the point where I was getting pitted scarring. I was also struggling immensely with my self-esteem. I was terrified of going outside, meeting people, working with others and so forth. I was depressed and had a negative outlook on my future. Anybody who believes your feelings are in vain have no idea what struggling with severe acne is like.
Treatment: I, like many with acne, became consumed by looking for a cure (diets, ointments, peroxides etc.). Hoping to stumble upon something that would give me some glimmer of hope. I was too scared to take Accutane, but also fed up with having acne. After struggling for so long and silently, I decided enough was enough. I came across these great reviews and thought what the heck!
Currently: I started on 50 mg of sprio and noticed improvement within a few weeks. After 6-months though, I can say my skin has healed so much. I could cry. I still do get SMALL red blemishes every now and then, but it's heaven compared to what I had before. I notice on 75 mg my skin gets clearer (but I've had some side effects on 75 mg like getting my period every 2 weeks, peeing like crazy which is why I stuck to 50 mg). I wasn't expecting perfection, just improvement and I'm much happier now.
I have adult hormonal cystic acne on my jawline and I take 100mg of this daily. It took about 3 months, but it did end up clearing up the cysts. I will still get a cyst every once in a while, but not in big clumps like I used to. Just a warning, though, this does cause more frequent urination. I'm getting up 2-3 times a night to go.