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Hey,

My name's Scott, and (big surprise) I've been fighting acne for several years. I honestly can't remember when exactly I started breaking out badly but I know it was at least 4 years ago. Anyway, I'm now 19 and still dealing with it. I've been on numerous antibiotics and retinols (I'm on erythromycin in combination with differin and benzoclin right now), which have helped for a bit but not really stopped anything. I'll go through cycles where I clear up somewhat (still red with mild breakouts but not as severe) just to break out badly again. I'm also a second-year engineering student at GA Tech, so the stress never ends. Pretty much, I'm frustrated and sick of dealing with this (again, big surprise).

I've been seeing a derm for about 3-4 years now, and he first mentioned accutane to me during my first visit. Of course, after reading about it, especially all the risks, I decided that I'd try everything else first. Well, it's been 3 years and, still got acne. It's also spread, until this summer I never had it on my back and now it's all over my upper back and shoulders. So, I scheduled an appointment in a few weeks specifically to ask about accutane. :boohoo:

I had a few concerns though, so I was hoping to find some input here.

I am prone to dry skin (genetics and northern winters for 18 years), and I wear contacts, so the dryness factor worries me. I already use Cetaphil as a moisturizer, so I'm mostly looking for advise on eyes. Anyone here wear contacts that has some tips?

I'm going to be studying abroad in France starting May 14, 2007, so I won't be able to stay on the drug during that time. Will ~5 months be long enough to allow for a full treatment, and if not, will I be able to start treatment again in about 2.5 months?

What exactly is "initial breakout" and how long does it usually last?

I'm 19 now, and I'm hoping that if I do a round of accutane, I'm old enough that it will keep my acne away for good. Is this a realistic goal?

How common and severe are the emotional problems? I live with 3 other guys so I'm not too worried as I'll have people keepin an eye on me, but I'm mainly just curious.

Oh, and this is kind of a stretch, but I'm getting my wisdom teeth about about 2 weeks after I hope to start. Does anyone know if accutane and vicodin can be taked simultaneously?

Any advice and answers would be greatly appreciated, and any other input as well. Thanks! :cool:

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Hey Scott, I'm sorry about what you've been through with acne...but you're making a great choice on wanting to go on Accutane. I'm on my last month, I was prescribed 60 mg for 5 months and the Accutane has cleared me up completely :D I never experienced any emotional side effects, if I was emotional it was for a good reason. Well those are the only questions I could answer for you, I wish you the best of luck with everything :)

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I'm on day #22 - but from what I hear the beginning tends to be the worst in terms of side effects....so far....

I haven't had any problems with dry skin....except where I have acne. I wear contacts and haven't noticed any difference with them; although I used to sleep in them from time to time - but I've been careful to always take them out - just in case.

No emotional side effects - except being pissed off about my IB.

The inital breakout (IB) sucked for me. Some people don't get one at all - basically it was like my typical acne but 3x as bad. I got it around day #8 and it's finally almost clear now.

My lips were chapped pretty bad at first - now it's fine.

If you play sports/work out - keep in mind some people have less energy and strength while on accutane. I still work out, but I can't put up the same weight I could before. And I'm very sore the next day.

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Hey,

My name's Scott, and (big surprise) I've been fighting acne for several years. I honestly can't remember when exactly I started breaking out badly but I know it was at least 4 years ago. Anyway, I'm now 19 and still dealing with it. I've been on numerous antibiotics and retinols (I'm on erythromycin in combination with differin and benzoclin right now), which have helped for a bit but not really stopped anything. I'll go through cycles where I clear up somewhat (still red with mild breakouts but not as severe) just to break out badly again. I'm also a second-year engineering student at GA Tech, so the stress never ends. Pretty much, I'm frustrated and sick of dealing with this (again, big surprise).

I've been seeing a derm for about 3-4 years now, and he first mentioned accutane to me during my first visit. Of course, after reading about it, especially all the risks, I decided that I'd try everything else first. Well, it's been 3 years and, still got acne. It's also spread, until this summer I never had it on my back and now it's all over my upper back and shoulders. So, I scheduled an appointment in a few weeks specifically to ask about accutane. :boohoo:

I had a few concerns though, so I was hoping to find some input here.

I am prone to dry skin (genetics and northern winters for 18 years), and I wear contacts, so the dryness factor worries me. I already use Cetaphil as a moisturizer, so I'm mostly looking for advise on eyes. Anyone here wear contacts that has some tips?

I wear contacts and haven't experienced a problem. I don't think this is a side effect that effects the majority of people. Try sending a PM to BeenThereDoneThat. I think she couldn't wear her contact lenses during one of her accutane courses. Worst comes to worst, you may have to stick to glasses for a while

I'm going to be studying abroad in France starting May 14, 2007, so I won't be able to stay on the drug during that time. Will ~5 months be long enough to allow for a full treatment, and if not, will I be able to start treatment again in about 2.5 months?

Many courses last less than 5 months (i.e. around 4) so you should be OK. I think i is still unusual for an Accutane course to last more than 6 months. You should either be finished month 5 or if not could ask for another month to take whilst you are away. I would avoid a long break in the middle of treatment if possible.

What exactly is "initial breakout" and how long does it usually last?

That term is used to refer to a period when you acne actually gets worse on Accutane (or any other med). I don't know what is supposed to cause it. People talk in terms of acne taking weeks to form and therefore acne which would have come out in a couple of weeks being forced to the surface sooner. I did not have an initial breakout but was on antibiotics during the first few weeks of my course. Whilst everyone on the site seems to get an IB, I think the statistic is that it is actually not that common with only around 20% getting one. Unfortunately it is impossible to tell how long it will last.

I'm 19 now, and I'm hoping that if I do a round of accutane, I'm old enough that it will keep my acne away for good. Is this a realistic goal?

Impossbile to tell unfortunately. Hopefully you will be cured. However, even if you are not, most people should see some long term remission and if the acne does return it shouldn't be as severe as before

How common and severe are the emotional problems? I live with 3 other guys so I'm not too worried as I'll have people keepin an eye on me, but I'm mainly just curious.

Less than 1% I understand

Oh, and this is kind of a stretch, but I'm getting my wisdom teeth about about 2 weeks after I hope to start. Does anyone know if accutane and vicodin can be taked simultaneously?

I experienced delayed healing on Accutane. If possible, I would try to get that appointment for your wisdom tooth moved forward. I assume Vicodin is an antibiotic? You can take antibiotics on Accutane, but the use of -cyclines are contraindicated because of a small risk of brain swelling. Other antibiotics should be OK, but some doctors still prescribe the two together.

Any advice and answers would be greatly appreciated, and any other input as well. Thanks! :cool:

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Thanks for the input!

Sounds like 5 months should be long enough.

I can't reschedule my wisdom teeth removal as I'm getting it done right after my current semester ends...mine are all impacted so I expect to be really out of it for about a week. Vicodin is a very strong pain killer, similar to tylenol but much much stronger, that is usually prescribed to surgery patients or those with very bad injuries. I'll prob only be on it for a week at the most, so if anything I guess I can wait to start Accutane until after that.

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Hey,

My name's Scott, and (big surprise) I've been fighting acne for several years. I honestly can't remember when exactly I started breaking out badly but I know it was at least 4 years ago. Anyway, I'm now 19 and still dealing with it. I've been on numerous antibiotics and retinols (I'm on erythromycin in combination with differin and benzoclin right now), which have helped for a bit but not really stopped anything. I'll go through cycles where I clear up somewhat (still red with mild breakouts but not as severe) just to break out badly again. I'm also a second-year engineering student at GA Tech, so the stress never ends. Pretty much, I'm frustrated and sick of dealing with this (again, big surprise).

I've been seeing a derm for about 3-4 years now, and he first mentioned accutane to me during my first visit. Of course, after reading about it, especially all the risks, I decided that I'd try everything else first. Well, it's been 3 years and, still got acne. It's also spread, until this summer I never had it on my back and now it's all over my upper back and shoulders. So, I scheduled an appointment in a few weeks specifically to ask about accutane. :boohoo:

There is NO DOUBT in my mind you should give it a go. I wouldn't have waited for more than 2-3 months! The risks are WAY overblown. It needs proper medical supervision, sure, but there's a lot of drugs out there that have similar risk and nowhere near the hysteria surrounding them.

I had a few concerns though, so I was hoping to find some input here.

I am prone to dry skin (genetics and northern winters for 18 years), and I wear contacts, so the dryness factor worries me. I already use Cetaphil as a moisturizer, so I'm mostly looking for advise on eyes. Anyone here wear contacts that has some tips?

You might have to use moisturizers on face and lips more frequently, but I've found this issue to be controllable pretty easily.

For the eyes, I'd really ask your eye doctor. I don't wear contacts, but my eye doctor made an excellent recommendation to me for eye drops. I'll bet that accutane and contacts is a fairly well known problem to good eye doctors.

I'm going to be studying abroad in France starting May 14, 2007, so I won't be able to stay on the drug during that time. Will ~5 months be long enough to allow for a full treatment, and if not, will I be able to start treatment again in about 2.5 months?

If you're down to your last month, take it with you. You might be able to arrange with your doctor to have follow up in France as well. the med is used there. If not, I'd try to get the daily dosage to equal the recommended cumulative dosage of 125mg/kg before you leave, or at least to the point where you get your last month refill before you leave.

What exactly is "initial breakout" and how long does it usually last?

Initial breakout is a side effect that some but not all experience. For me, it was an exacerbation of my blackheads - they kind of felt like they were being squeezed out. I also had some worsening of my condition in my "problem areas". All this started a couple weeks after beginning treatment, and ended a couple of weeks after that. In other words: first two weeks, no change, second two weeks, kind of worse, after 1 month: better, quickly improving to totally clear within about 6 weeks.

I'm 19 now, and I'm hoping that if I do a round of accutane, I'm old enough that it will keep my acne away for good. Is this a realistic goal?

Yes. It wasn't for me, but it did cure me for 5-10 years after which I took it again. But my problem acne didn't appear until early 30s, which I think is a different type than the teenage acne, and is not grown out of as well.

For most people who take that cumulative dose of at least 125 mg/kg, it ends up being a permanent cure or very long term remission. My theory is that for people of your age, you're likely to grow out of it within 5-10 years and if the accutane holds you for that long, you've bought enough time.

How common and severe are the emotional problems? I live with 3 other guys so I'm not too worried as I'll have people keepin an eye on me, but I'm mainly just curious.

Very, very uncommon if at all. There are very weak associations shown by research, and equally as valid studies that show no connection between accutane and mental health issues. The much more likely scenario is that depression is CURED because your face is cured. I truely and strongly believe this.

Oh, and this is kind of a stretch, but I'm getting my wisdom teeth about about 2 weeks after I hope to start. Does anyone know if accutane and vicodin can be taked simultaneously?

You should definitely discuss this with your doctor. I do not think it is necessarily a contraindication, but that should be considered by the doc.

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