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a218robin

Ladies Be Careful On Accutane

Hi there. I just wanted to share my accutane story and let you know to be very careful. I have had extreme acne since I was 13, got my first pimple at 8. I recall most of my teen years as medicated on something- I tried everything- but never got very far- as soon as my acne would clean up on a med... it would "adjust" and get worse again. Eventually I was fed up and had heard about accutane. My acne was relatively under control-but I was taking oral antibiotics and topical antibiotics as well as retinol creams. I finally found a derm that would prescribe accutane for me. So I started taking it.

I read all the stuff about not getting pregnant and my doctor made me sign stuff about two birth controls and well, basically remove any right to sue if I did get pregnant. He said I'd get tested once a month to make sure I wasn't pregnant- and I got tested twice before I started the meds. My husband and I decided that my BCPs and some foam would do the trick. Problem is that foam got a little messy and so we relied on just the BCPs a few times. And just into my third month on accutane I got pregnant. I should have been tested five days before I took a home prego test when I was at the doctor's but he forgot to order the test.... So now I was faced with all those scarey drawings on the box.

What I went through was an absolute nightmare. I have to tell you, those pictures aren't nearly as scary until that's what you're really looking at.... My GYN told me that 90% of people in my position abort. We were scared to death and did tons of research. Well, my husband and I couldn't do that. So, we decided at 5 weeks pregnant to keep the baby (we found out way early- I got carsick- and I never get carsick), regardless of what might go wrong. Well, it was a terribly scary pregnancy. No one really knew the odds. We were told good news one day by a specialist, but they said they really didn't know. I can't express how awful it is to think that your own vanity (amazing how a dose of reality can change your opinion on your acne) could cause your child to be disfigured, with mental and physical disabilities. What I went through no one should go through.

So anyways- what I am trying to express is that it is extremely important to take your BCPs (which actually only work 90% of the time for the avg girl- to get it to the 97-99% on the label- you have to take them at the exact same time every day(set your timer)) and use condoms every time- or just don't do anything. I was very lucky and blessed. I have a beautiful baby girl who has no physical abnormalities and no apparent mental disabilities. However, she is not responding to noise and is getting her hearing checked to determine if she is deaf or has a hearing impairment (another side effect of accutane).

It has been exactly one year to today when my husband and I decided to keep our baby. We are so glad that we did. She's a joy. But the risks are not worth it. If you can not guarantee that you will be absolutely safe every time-that passion won't get in the way- don't take this medicine. I don't know if it makes you more likely to get pregnant or what (I was on BCPs for 7 years and sexually active with no pregnancies)... but it's just not worth the risks.

Please consider this before you sign on the dotted line- no matter how safe you are- something could happen. My daughter may be deaf - may not be able to hear my voice or anyone else's- because I took an acne medicine (and didn't use every available precaution). My acne went away during my pregnancy but has resurfaced. I don't know if I will go back on meds again. It's just crazy knowing what power they have.

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She didn't write this to get your response of what she should've could've done to prevent her situation. She wrote this to illustrate to others that they should never be lax about always making sure to have 2 forms of birth control while they are on the tane as the consequences are real and serious and one careless decision such as hers (using one form of birth control) could result in serious moral decision and a lifetime of mental/physical issue.

Take your ipledge seriously. Sure, it is intrusive and all that, but feeling aside of how litigeous we've become, treat it as seriously as you would of anything that you have face in your life, especially if you are a teenager.

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A218 - Thanks for taking the time to post. I think most women will have heard about the risks associated with Accutane and pregnancy and the precautions to take, but it is still a useful (but sad/scary) reminder when someone like you posts their story.

Ilikepancakes - Someone is worrying about the health of her new baby and the most you can do is make a nasty comment? Really doesn't say much about your character.

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Sorry but she could have made someone's life ruined because she was irresponsible. sad to hear people can't take the 2 seconds it would take to prevent this

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ilikepancakes, I think most, if not all share your feeling.

However, she isn't asking for your sympathy in regard to the consequences of her decision and criticism in that matter after the fact detract from the most important message, that this is not just some warning label on the box and that ipledge isn't some government conspiracy to make you jump through hoops... when there are serious consequences from individuals not taking their responsibilities seriously.

and I think for those that have issues with abortion, you should do everything, even beyond having 2 forms of birth control to make sure that you do not get pregnant while on accutane.

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a218: I hope your baby turn out ok. If she does have problem hearing, I read somewhere that young children have a high success rate for surgical hearing correction, which is permanent. Make sure you explore this option.

Also, I think what pancakes are trying to tactfully point out is that as an extra precaution, use condoms as well as BCP when you're on accutane. As a218 pointed out, the extra precautions are worth it.

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Sorry but she could have made someone's life ruined because she was irresponsible. sad to hear people can't take the 2 seconds it would take to prevent this

Did you read the post? She got the message and I don't think she needed you to point it out in such a callous way.

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Once again proving that no matter how thoroughly you warn people of the absolute neccessity of using two reliable forms of birth control at every single sexual encounter, they still don't take it seriously and get pregnant anyway.

I feel for your daughter, but your cautionary tale irritates me deeply because it's just one more nail in the coffin for the only medication that's ever brought my acne into remission. I fear that i'll need it again in ten years or so but won't be able to get it because it will be banned due to people's continued reproductive irresponsibility.

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Once again proving that no matter how thoroughly you warn people of the absolute neccessity of using two reliable forms of birth control at every single sexual encounter, they still don't take it seriously and get pregnant anyway.

I feel for your daughter, but your cautionary tale irritates me deeply because it's just one more nail in the coffin for the only medication that's ever brought my acne into remission. I fear that i'll need it again in ten years or so but won't be able to get it because it will be banned due to people's continued reproductive irresponsibility.

Second this.

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Someone once told me that when you decide to have sex you have to be ready to die for it because of everything that can go wrong.

If you're on accutane. Know that this is a risk and BEFORE you start discuss with your partner the ultimate risks. In this case tho i think it was honestly not the fault of the woman who became preganant, she simply did not think the BCP would fail and tho it boggles my mind most people in monogamous relationships don't use condoms. (i am insistant on it even tho i'm on BCP tho)

Sadly no matter what things can happen. Instead of telling her what she COULD have done, i think now its a question of what she can do. She posted so that others would have a clearer idea of the risks. its not a slam against accutane but rather a cautionary tale of the things you think you might not have to think about but SHOULD while you're on it.

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i think it was honestly not the fault of the woman who became preganant, she simply did not think the BCP would fail

Well, it's both of their faults if you want to lay blame properly. She was warned of the need to use TWO RELIABLE FORMS OF BIRTH CONTROL EVERY SINGLE TIME, and she agreed to do this, and then she DIDN'T do this because it was too "messy". She should have switched her secondary form to something effective that she would actually use like condoms for instance instead of simply relying on the birth control pill. If you don't know that the pill can fail you just aren't paying attention. Even with perfect use, 99.9% effective - that still means that one in a thousand will get pregnant anyway. And most people don't use it perfectly and the odds are actually considerably less favorable in the real world. This is the very reason that you must agree to use a backup form and then actually do so.

And incidentally i am sorry that this sounds so judgmental but it's really frustrating that people don't take the need to prevent isotretinoin-exposed pregnancies seriously. The original poster opened herself up to these kind of responses by posting this, and i'm glad that she did. It takes a lot of courage to admit that you seriously messed up, even anonymously on a message board. Maybe some of the less responsible Accutane users might wise up from hearing her story, but i doubt it. It's just human nature to think that it can't happen to you.

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My husband and I decided that my BCPs and some foam would do the trick. Problem is that foam got a little messy and so we relied on just the BCPs a few times. And just into my third month on accutane I got pregnant.

I can't express how awful it is to think that your own vanity (amazing how a dose of reality can change your opinion on your acne) could cause your child to be disfigured, with mental and physical disabilities.

But the risks are not worth it.

I don't know if it makes you more likely to get pregnant or what (I was on BCPs for 7 years and sexually active with no pregnancies)... but it's just not worth the risks.

Please consider this before you sign on the dotted line- no matter how safe you are- something could happen. My daughter may be deaf - may not be able to hear my voice or anyone else's- because I took an acne medicine (and didn't use every available precaution). My acne went away during my pregnancy but has resurfaced. I don't know if I will go back on meds again. It's just crazy knowing what power they have.

I disagree with these statements.

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I'm happy for you, yet anrgy with you at the same time.

Its because of yours and other peoples irresponsibility that accutane will end up becoming banned in the future. The downfall only goes on those in the years to come who need accutane and would be a million times more responsible about it than you were, but they will be unable to make use of this medication thanks to the previous irresponsible people who have taken this drug.

You are extremely lucky that your daughter came out as well as she did, if you do find that she has any disabilities including her hearing, I feel bad for her having to hear from you that its because of you that she cant lead a completely normal life.

Aside from my views on your actions, this is a very good warning to anyone who is slightly considering not taking these warnings seriously.

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Sorry but she could have made someone's life ruined because she was irresponsible. sad to hear people can't take the 2 seconds it would take to prevent this

yeah, but maybe because she was brave enough to post this a couple girls might think twice about it and in the end will actually help more people then it hurt....maybe it will all be for the better in the long run

just trying to be optimistic lol

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