Okay, so I'm a 21 year old whose dermatologist diagnosed acne as severe, cystic/nodular acne. OUCH is all I gotta say. My acne problem started later than a lot of people; I was in my junior year of high school and it wasn't too terrible. Entering college, it got worse but makeup always covered them and they were pretty minor. Mostly my back acne was terrible -- cysts and the like. My sophomore year of college, I began taking birth control (Yaz) which did wonderful things for my acne! I wasn't cured, but my back acne pretty much disappeared except for blackheads, etc. But after medical problems caused me to switch to an IUD for birth control (Mirena) my face FREAKED OUT. During this time (Jan '11-May '11), I was living in Spain on a Study Abroad and chalked it up to the desert/beach climate and calcium filled water that did terrible things to my skin and hair.
Up until now, I've tried everything. OTC -- everything including ProActiv, etc.
Rx -- Bunch of anti-biotics in high school for my staph infection (incidentally helped acne) and now 3 types of birth control.
I'm ready to have clear skin!! My mom took Accutane after my younger sister was born and said it was well worth the pain. Many of my friends (guys and girls!) said that it was the only thing that really worked. So here's hoping!
Currently, my acne manifests itself on my face, especially cheeks and jawline. I have at least ten swollen cysts along both sides of my face, with the biggest ones measuring probably 1inch on the left side. They are so so painful! I accidentally scratch wrong and am almost brought to tears. My chest is pretty clear, aside from the random clogged pore that will go away on its own. My back has been worse lately but mostly it's my upper shoulders with smaller, red pimples. No cysts there yet! God willing, anyway. It's strange but I even have had a cyst behind my ears. Talk about painful...I wear sunglasses constantly!
Come on, Accutane!! Do it to it.