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I am a 23 year old female who has been suffering from acne since before puberty. My acne runs the gamut from blackheads to whiteheads to severe cysts. I went on an oral contraceptive when I was a teenager and that helped keep my skin clear for a few years, but about a year ago my cystic acne returned with a vengeance. I would say it was worse than it had ever been, and nothing topical was helping, so I went to my dermatologist. She explained that spironolactone is a good option for women who are out of the teen years, but are still dealing with considerable hormonal acne. She started me on a dose of 150mg of spiro a day, along with a course of doxycycline and a topical retinoid (Ziana). The important thing to remember about spiro is it takes a while to kick in, so please don't get discouraged if you don't see results right away. I continued to break out pretty bad for the first two months I was on it, even while taking the antibiotic. But then suddenly it was like the spiro had just been building up and finally started to kick in and work its magic. My breakouts slowed dramatically, and I discontinued the doxy. I take 100mg of spiro in the morning and 50mg in the evening (it is a diuretic, so it's better to take your higher dose earlier in the day to prevent waking up at night to pee), and am using the retinoid twice a week. My skin hasn't looked this good in a long time. My skin's oil production has slowed down too, which is a great bonus. I still struggle with some blackheads in my t-zone, but my cystic acne is 99% gone, and that's my main concern (I can treat my blackheads, but cysts have always been an uphill battle).
Side effects (THAT I NOTICED):
*The biggest one for me is dizziness. Spiro lowers your blood pressure, which isn't dangerous in itself, but it's just something to be aware of because it can cause you to feel light-headed. If I am dehydrated when I take it, I can get dizzy and am prone to really bad head rushes when I stand up. But if I make sure to take my spiro with water and some food, I don't really have that problem. I have found that if I get dizzy, eating something salty helps a lot.
*The first few months I had some issues with tiredness for a few hours after taking my doses, but it seems I have gotten over that now.
*I drink a ton of water and I am used to going pee more than the average woman, so the diuretic effect doesn't really bother me. But I imagine it might be annoying for some people.
I would recommend this to anyone, but just know that it's not a quick fix! It will most likely take some time to work for you. Be patient and you will see good results!
A year ago I had cystic acne around my mouth and chin. As many know, cystic acne does not respond to topical treatment 9 out of 10 times. (I would actually say 10 out of 10). Initially i thought it was my diet, so I cut out all carbs, sugars, dairy, etc. hoping that it would change something. I juiced every day, drank nothing but water, and still nothing changed. It got to the worst it has ever been last July. My entire skin broke out in a way that was unimaginable and quite frankly unbearable. My self esteem was so low and I spent months depressed and avoiding social interaction. I ended up diagnosing myself with PCOS after hours of research. I figured out that acne resulting from PCOS is due to increased androgen (testosterone) production and insulin resistance. Basically, sugar and testosterone together can lead to the perfect environment for acne to thrive. I went to my derm and OBGYN and found that indeed my testosterone was high. and my derm wanted to put me on accutane; but after doing research myself I realized that accutane does not target hormonal acne. Therefore I thought Spiro would be best, and he agreed after I asked his opinion at my next appointment. I was on 50mg a day at first but after a week or so decided to bump it up to 100 myself. It has worked miracles for me and I havent really noticed an negative side effects at all. Ive been on it for almost a year and have no complaints. I am beyond grateful for it. I have found that taking supplemental ZInc 30mg a day as well helps (read more for yourself. works like an antibiotic). Also, mainting blood sugar is so important in order to make sure you dont experience spikes throughout the day. I eat a lot of high protein food and do not eat any breads, pasta or things containing flour. NO sodas, sweets, or dairy really. Mostly salads and lean meat. Ill have a cookie every now and then though ONLY after Ive eaten a high protein meal so that it isnt the first thing to hit my stomach. Hope this helps!
[link removed] <---- great info about acne and PCOS as well as other hormonal issues
I never ever write reviews, but I felt the need to share my experience on spironolactone. In my early 20s, I went on spironolactone as a last resort. I had terrible hormonal acne for years along my jawline and red inflamed skin no matter what I tried. Spironolactone worked like a charm for me, and I was on it for almost 4 years with absolutely perfect skin. However, after some time, I started to develop digestive issues and generally did not feel well most of the time. At the recommendation of a doctor, I decided to go off of Spiro at that time. After a few months off of Spiro my acne came back full force, but I remained off of Spiro for another two years. During that time, I coincidentally had food allergy testing done and found out that I had a mild dairy allergy. I cut most dairy out of my diet (not all, but definitely cut way back on dairy) and after about 6 months my skin became perfectly clear again (just like when I had been on Spiro). I've been off of dairy for almost two years now and my skin is still clear. For me, I believe dairy had been causing a hormonal imbalance which Spiro had temporarily covered up years before. While I don't know this for sure, I wanted to share my story in case it happens to be the same for any of you. A natural cure may be possible depending on your situation. Good luck to all of you in searching for an acne solution!
Spiro literally dried my whole body out! Sure it helps the cystic acne, but at what cost? In 4 months, I gained wrinkles, weight, cellulite, dry eyes, acid reflux and my stomach is constantly bloated. I play soccer constantly and was starting to feel weak....BAM ....muscle loss. I was randomly sweating, I was literally red all the time. I already had sufficient breasts, now they are huge, painful, and annoying! I have been off of this evil drug for 2 weeks and feel a ton better, but still have the bloating, cellulite, and dry eyes. Also, I have issues with anxiety, and this stuff made it WORSE!!!! My skin has NOT gotten worse since I stopped taking it, it has gotten BETTER. How long until all the side effects go away!!?!?!?!?! Anyone else hate their Dr for putting them on this????? I only gave this 1 star because it made me. Should have negative stars!!!!
I am 16 years old and I have been on spironolactone for exactly 3 weeks now to treat my hormonal acne.
I've had acne for 2 years now but just this past year it's gotten dramactically worse. I was trying everything! No matter how much I cleansed my face, used on the spot treatment, or moisturized my face, there was no improvemnt. In a matter of 4 months, I had 2 cystic pimples underneath my eye that caused it to swell almost completely shut and even slight bruising. I had to miss 2 days of school because of terrible, swollen zits(EMBARRASSING)! I then got put on antibiotics for 10 days which cleared my face up both times, but unfortunately I couldn't use the antibiotic as a long-term acne medication. I got put on birth control 7 months ago solely for acne. Once again, there was no improvement. Each day my self confidence was slowly decreasing. My mom finally took me to the dermatologist when I had one of my breakdowns in front of her. She asked what was wrong and I told her I hated myself. The truth is, I didn't hate myself, but I was so upset and embarrased about my acne. I just wanted a simple clear face like all of my friends and relatives. In the morning I would spend almost an hour doing my makeup to cover up my scars and pimples and even with concealer you could see some blemishes.
Now back to spiro... I am SO HAPPY about the results I've already had! This has been the first time in forever the my forehead has been completely clear. The blackheads on my nose are going away more and more everyday. The white heads on my chin have decreased in size. The big zits I had on my cheeks are gone! GONE. I feel like some of the scars on my face are beginning to fade as well. I have 2 small pimples that are tolerable and coverable with concealer. I was actually able to go in public yesterday without foundation and using only a small amount of concealer. I was beyond excited about actually feeling confident with my face with hardly any makeup. I am out of my "hating myself" state and I can't wait to see better results in the next couple of weeks.
For anyone looking into this medication whether you're a teenager or an adult, I highly recommend it!! This medicine has helped so much and it's only been 3 weeks. (For anyone wondering, I have been on 50mg the entire time)
Background- my doctors believe I have an atypical case of PCOS (meaning I don't have many of the symptoms most women with PCOS have, but do have polycystic ovaries), found this out in March 2015.
Day 38 of 50mg/day of Spiro & just started my third pack of Beyaz BC pills. So needless to say my skin has been going through a rollercoaster of hormonal changes the last 2 months & I have been so depressed about it. Since starting both meds, I have had at least 2 active cysts on my face at all times (and many other acne spots that are scaring or trying to heal). I feel like I have been living at the derm office with all the weekly injections I am getting (really is the only way for my cysts to diminish). Yesterday, my derm agreed to up my dosage to 100mg of spiro a day. I am PRAYING this is what will do the trick. I know that I need to give the spiro & BC pills time to work (they say 3-4 months?). But I am sure others can agree that acne is so draining, it's all I can think about and has literally spiraled me into being depressed. Any words of encouragement? Do I just need to stick it out for results? Thanks so much for any responses :)
Like a lot women, I was acne free until high school. I used to pride myself on my glowing skin so my self esteem tanked when I started getting cystic acne. On top of that, my oily skin got worse so I had smaller white heads dispersed in between.
My derm tried sulfur face wash, antibiotics, and ortho tri-cyclen birth control. The birth control helped the most but my skin still wasn't clear, even after patiently waiting for 3 months. Frustrated and determined to get my skin back, I turned to Acne.org. I found out about spiro through the forums and product reviews. I was going to ask my derm about it at my next appointment, but she was one step ahead of me. She wrote me a prescription for 25 mg a day.
About 2 months later my skin was clear. I still has those nasty red marks where my acne used to be, but no new pimples! I am now 23 years old and was acne free for most of college (minus the occasional stress breakouts.)
Since my skin improved, I stopped taking my spiro about a year ago. However, I had a nasty break out recently (which I attribute to ridiculously hot/sweaty summers in Arizona.) I resumed taking spiro and my skin has significantly improved. I'm not completely clear yet, but I'm well on my way.
Moral of the story: This stuff works. If you are a woman with oily skin and hormonal acne, this might be your cure.
Good luck to all you beautiful ladies!
I started taking spiro at 25mg per day. I didn't see a bit of difference after a bunch of weeks, so I wondered if I should bump it up to 50mg. However, I read a lot of other reviews that advised waiting. So I waited and waited. I took like 4 months to start clearing. Finally 6 months later I am 100% clear, I never have to wear makeup, and I only get 1 or 2 little spots before my period, which I can live with. However, it is a diuretic - I get low blood pressure, have trouble standing up, and I have to pee like 14 times a day. I also got the worst cellulite on my legs - soooo bad. I personally wouldn't go higher than 25mg, it's an androgen blocker and my testosterone was extremely high and my other androgens were literally off the charts they were so high (I have PCOS). So if you are wondering if you need to go up, be patient, and be prepared for some pretty awful side effects. My thoughts are, I can cover up the cellulite on my legs by wearing pants, but its harder to cover up your face. That said I will probably stop taking it soon and try saw palmetto as some others have suggested.
I am a 22 year old female and have had pimples here and there for most of my teen years. December 2014 my skin was gorgeous, clearer than it has ever been and then came January.. All the sudden the skin around my mouth erupted in rash like bumps and then progressed to acne -looking bumps as well as cysts that moved down to my chin/ jaw and up along the sides of my nose & even under my eye ( which swelled shut at one point and turned black & blue due to a cyst). I was told by 4 different doctors that I had perioral dermatitis & was put on antivirals, antibiotics, topicals and had blood work and cultures taken of my skin. No luck. I finally saw a dermatologist who put me on more antibiotics (100mg) for 2 months which did nothing but give me UTIs. After a second visit with him last week, and zero improvement (despite trying every holistic treatment under the sun, including going sodium laurel sulfate -free) he put me on spironolactone. It has been 1 week and my skin is nightmare-ish right now. I have multiple cysts and my chin is covered in painful spots. I feel so depressed, my confidence is shot and most days I can't bring myself to leave the house. I hope and pray my skin starts to improve soon. After 6 months of this constant physical & emotional pain, I don't know how much more I can take. Anyone have a similar experience? Or advice?
So I have been on it for over 11 weeks and there have been improvement in my skin however I have been getting my period every other week, not exaggerating! Then after my last period it went 8 days and started up again! I stopped taking it for a few days and I have been getting really bad headaches, not sure if that's related. I see others comments but no one really stated about if they have had messed up cycles and if that went back to normal...