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hi everybody.

my name's kat and i'm about to start accutane. i'm an 18 year old college sophomore from the boston area, and i am so ready to get rid of this acne! but a little bit about that:

i've actually been on accutane before. about three years ago, when i was 15 and a sophomore in high school, i had already been through that process of trying everything. so my derm put me on accutane and all was well afterward. not too many months after my treatment was done, though, i got my acne back, little by little. three years later i am in college and my acne is back, full blown and worse than before, actually. i don't have cystic acne, but i have moderately bad acne on my forehead, chin, and cheeks.

after going through months and months of frustration with birth control and ipledge, i'm finally starting accutane on monday or tuesday. i was supposed to get my prescription friday, but a full 30 days hadn't passed from when my derm signed me up for ipledge. so monday or tuesday it is.

here's a list of what i've been on and procedures i've had:

- differin

- retin a

- benzoyl peroxide (all strengths, topical and wash)

- salicylic acid (pff..)

- every antibiotic you can imagine

- clindamycin (lotion and gel)

- benzaclin

- sulfur pills (has anybody else ever been on these?!)

- tazorac (gel and cream)

- proactiv

- acid peel (horribly painful)

- microdermabrasion

- ortho-tri-cyclin

- accutane (amnesteem)

as you can see, i've been around the block (like most of you have). it's ridiculous that it's taken so long for me to get on accutane again. i've been from derm to derm, and finally i've found one who will put me on it. unfortunately, she's young and has made quite a few mistakes that have caused delays, which are ALWAYS frustrating when you want to get rid of acne. when i did accutane the first time there was no damn ipledge and it was already complicated enough. agh!

my derm said i'd be starting 40 mg/day. i asked if we could eventually up the dose (i don't want this #%@$ to come back!) and she said maybe. can't wait to get my prescription.

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day 1

finally!

i just took my first pill. oh, how i missed seeing those deformed babies and crossed out pregnant ladies.

i'm on sotret, 40 mg/day. it seems that alot of people start out on that dosage, and also that alot of people are on sotret (not that it really matters too much), so that's reassuring. my derm said that putting me on 40 mg/day to start would hopefully prevent an initial breakout, as opposed to a stronger dose that i guess would push out the crap in my face to the surface too quickly.

when i took accutane last time, the only notable side effect i got was the dry skin. of course my body has changed since i was 15 years old, but i'm hoping i won't have any other major side effects. we'll see how that goes.

i have my accutane army set up: cetaphil face wash, aquaphor for my lips, and a moisturizer. i'm looking for a new moisturizer though - i tried cetaphil and it was too greasy, i'm on dml right now and it also leaves a sort of greasy film. i've tried "light" lotions, but light doesn't really cut it when it comes to accutane. have any of you guys got moisturizer that works but isn't greasy?

i guess that's all for now... don't want to ramble. i'll update with pictures once every week in case anybody wants to check out my progress.

till then ;)

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day 2

just took my second pill with my dinner. no side effects yet (i wasn't really expecting any this soon anyway), but i'm waiting for them to come... i'm actually still using a medicated wash, i probably only will for a few more days though. i just didn't want to let my skin go too much, cause i'm visiting my boyfriend and meeting his family this friday (eep!). hopefully it goes well. i wish my acne were gone by then, but you can't have everything, right? :rolleyes:

i did wake up this morning with a headache, which has never happened before, but i'm not gonna blame it on the accutane... yet.

as of now, my acne is moderately bad, pretty much all over my face. the reason why my derms have always been reluctant to put me on accutane is because i have little tiny pimples that look like they can be easily cured, but as i've learned, my acne is just really stubborn. i don't think i've mentioned that i also have it pretty bad on my chest and back. damn bacne! and umm... chacne? :shrug: the chicas here will know how awful it is to have chest acne - no wearing low cut shirts, no wearing cute dresses, no wearing bathing suits... it's awful! my back i don't care about as much, but it will be sweet to be able to wear whatever kind of dress or bathing suit i want. that is, after i lose weight.

i'm 5'6" and 130 pounds - after i gained the fresman 15 (or 16). prior to the school year, i was 114, so my body hasn't only been infested with acne, but also with, well, fat. i have stretch marks on my thighs and hips now (ew!). so getting rid of this acne is only one step to the new and improved kat. but i went to the gym for the first time the other day, and i'm hoping by the end of the summer my weight will be back to where i used to be and i'll have clear skin! or at least that's my plan...

until tommorow! :D

p.s. i'm still looking for a good moisturizer... anybody, anybody?

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hey kat...goodluck with your second course!...im on day 16 or so of taking sotret 40mg a day...things are going well so far...and like you, i feel my acne is more stubborn than anything...and you're from the boston area?...i went to umass...so, go sox!....anyways, a good moisturizer is aveeno ultra calming daily moisturizer with spf 15...its light and non greasy

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day 3

thanks for the support, already over, and for the info, greyfox. my sister went to umass too. :)

so, day 3. nothing really new to note other than a slightly dry throat and slightly dry eyes. i was always skeptic of people who said that they started drying up so early, but now i guess that they weren't lying.

since i dont have much to report, i'll tell a little story. (you guys can go get popcorn and snacks if you want, it's a real tearjerker.)

i've struggled with acne probably as early at the 5th grade. i got it when nobody else had it, and even in the 7th and 8th grade i had it worse than everybody else. one time in the 8th grade we had one of those uber-fun sessions where the school nurse was explaining maturation and the birds and the bees to us. she mentioned how some people get acne as they mature, and all of a sudden, all eyes were on me, the acne girl, who turned beet red at this point. she then explained that it could be treated if you just washed your face with soap and water every day and night (yeah right!). to make things worse, after the session, a few of the punks from the class walked by me and muttured under their breath "pimples" and then laughed at me. how traumitizing is that?! it was a moment where i felt totally ostracized; you have acne, we don't; you're different, we're normal. i still feel that way to a certain extent when i walk around today. like there's something abnormal about me, that it prevents people from approaching me or warming up to me. whether that's true or not, it's totally affected my self-confidence.

and that is why i'm so happy to be on accutane.

ok, i've gotta go pack. i can't wait to see my maaan. :wub:

until tommorow, y'all.

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stay below 40. you'll get permanent side effects on any more. those higher doses you read about where meant for severe cystic acne. you'll be complaining of eczema if you go higher. mmmk?

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day 4

ahhh, i just took a shower after getting a pretty sweet workout at the gym. damn, it feels good to sweat!

my skin is starting to get drier. not so much visibly, but my cheeks, that are usually soft and smooth, have started to turn rough. i've been moisturizing like crazy, but i don't want to overdo it for risk of getting super greasy.

overall, my skin looks ok. not too much going on, but i have just about as much acne as i've always had. i have a few more bigger ones than normal. i'm praying i don't get an IB, but we'll see about that. :pray: it seems like people expect them after as little as a few days of treatment but also after as long as a month or more after, so i don't really know what to expect.

i'm going to my boyfriends till monday night, so i won't be able to update till then. hopefully my acne will stay calm, i'll have fun, and impress his 'rents. hah. haha. wish me luck.

have a great weekend, everybody! (especially people in the boston area - it's FINALLY warm out!)

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day 8

ahh, finally back from connecticut. the visit went well. i think his parents were impressed :proud: holy crap, i never realized how wealthy connecticut is. one of his aunts had a 3 MILLION dollar kitchen. liiike, wtf?! nevertheless, wealth still isn't all that impressing.

i also met tons of his friends. cute friends. cute friends that probably thought i was not so cute with my abundant acne and enough grease on my face to make a bucket of fried chicken. siiigh. i just keep telling myself it will be clear soon enough.

my skin is... eh. not awful, but i do have about 4 fairly big cysts, and i never have that many. guess it's just the 'tane doing its work. not really an IB, but kind of. my skin is also quiiite greasy. you know how your skin is greasy before accutane, but when you take it, even though it gets dry and flaky, it's still really greasy? it stinks! i assume the grease will go away. i just hope my skin doesn't get so dry that my body reacts by oiling up all the time.

glad to be back! :D i'll update again tommorow night, and add new pics soon.

edit: here's the picks i promised. these are my one weekers. sorry they're so small, i just realized i have a limited amount of space for attachments. oopsies.

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I really like reading your log!! I had acne when i was young too.. before everyone else. And Ive tried everything!! So i can truly relate.

Im doing photodynamic therapy right now and if it does work I will definitly try accutane.

GOOD LUCK! Looking forward to seeing how it works out 4 u. :D

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hey there

i think youre only 2 days ahead of me :)

good luck with your course! ill be popping in to read your progress

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day 9

hi hi. i took my pill 3 hours later than usual tonight cause i forgot to do it after dinner, and then i went to the gym. i don't think it will really matter, but the idea of being on a schedule is more comforting than being erratic.

i feel alot of painful pimples coming up under my skin. there's a really bad one about to surface right under my eyebrow. how sightly, right? it's gonna be lovely. IB, anybody?

today i made my first resume and cover letter. i feel like such a big girl now. i didn't really want to make them, but lots of jobs are asking for resumes now, so i guess i had to. being a desperate, poor ass college student sucks.

welp, i'm tired. so i'm making this one short. night all.

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day 11

oops. i forgot to update last night and the night before that, so i'm updating this morning for those 2 nights.

um... my lips are alot dryer, but my face is not too bad. it is pretty oily though, and i had to wash it once mid-day because it had gotten really bad... my skin probably isn't dry because it oils up so much. gah. i think i'd rather have it be dry. i really haven't even been applying moisturizer because my skin hasn't felt dry after i wash it.

good news! i've noticed my blackheads (i have a ton on my nose and the middle of my forehead) are starting to pop out, at least that's what it looks like. i see a few coming to surface, like the kind that look really easy to pop out (don't worry, i'm not gonna pop 'em). i was reaally nervous that my blackheads would stay even with accutane, but it looks like they're gonna clear up!

i've become nervous about that i've started accutane and working out simultaneously. i've read a lot of things about people who have had to stop working out, or whose joints had been excessively aggrevated because they work out while on accutane. i'm not doing too much high impact stuff on my joints - elliptical and the bike are what i do for cardio, and then i'll do some ab/leg/arm machines. i guess if i start hurting i should just take it easy...

aight, i think i'll update again tonight to get back on track. have a great day, everybody! :-*

p.s. i never thank the people that stop by/comment on my log. thank you guys, i reaaally really appreciate it! i mean, the whole point of this log, besides showing what accutane is doing to me, is to get support, so it really means alot when i get a comment or see that more people have viewed it :wub:

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Hey there! Good luck on your course! Im starting at the end of next week, hopefully well both have great results!

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day 14

gosh, sorry i've taken so long to update.. between working out, trying to find a job, grad parties, and finally seeing friends from home, i've been short on time.

but here i am, day 14... hey, that's 2 whole weeks! guess i'd better take some pictures. just so i can have better quality ones and so that i can upload as many as i want, i've made a gallery. check it out!

my red spots are pretty awful. no major major breaking out, but a few baby cysts. good news: the bump under my eyebrow never surfaced. bad news: i think that it's an ingrown hair. bah. i've been trying to apply a hot washcloth to it every time i shower to open up the pore, but that bump's been there for like a week! uggh.

i put some pretty strong spot treatment on my big zits and also where my blackheads are popping out, just to try and speed things up. i'm pretty sure that by the end of the summer, even if i have a month or two left of treatment, that i'm gonna be pretty clear. and that's something to be happy, nay, ECSTATIC about. :dance:

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day 15

you know when you just feel like you have a good skin day? like, even if your acne is the same as always, it somehow doesn't look as bad, and your face just glows? today was one of those days. i don't know if it was cause of the accutane or what, but it was pretty sweet. also, for some reason i was alot less greasy today.

i applied aquaphor obsessively to my lips today. i can't stop picking them! agh.

i'm getting nervous because as i type this my left knee is hurting (i worked out alot tonight). bah, i reaaally don't want accutane to get in the way of my attempt for a hot bod. but of course i know that my joints are more important than being hot. blah blah blah.

super tired right now. signing off. till tomorrow, errbody.

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day 17

yo yo yo. skin was ok today. red dots everywhere, though. in some places my skin is really smooth, regardless of the dots. my lips suck. my face still isn't that dry. i washed it tonight and didn't even moisturize. if i did it would be too greasy.

sorry i'm speaking in fragments. it's been a very hard day/few days/week. sucks. :confused: but as long as it isn't affecting my acne there's no point in blabbing about it here. then again, my mom told me to "not be depressed," or at least to not tell my derm i've been feeling sad, for fear that she'll take me off accutane. being upset about personal problems and being depressed whilst on accutane are two different things, but everybody loves blowing stuff out of proportion. sigh...

sorry for the sucky post, guys. i'll have a better one tomorrow.

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day 21

hey guys :D i decided to only update now every few days, instead of every day. it keeps things more interesting, and is sufficient, i think.

anyway, my skin has improved A LOT in the past few days. from far away, it would be hard to tell that i even have acne. the only acne i do have are small, stubborn dots.

my blackheads are out of control! i can feel them with my fingers... my skin on my nose and the middle of my forehead is all bumpy. gaaah i want them to come out. i still use a salicylic acid wash sometimes, and it honestly hasn't dried me up too much (yet). i figure it will help to get those nasties out.

the worst thing about my skin right now it the discoloration from the red dots where my acne USED to be. and like... even if you don't have too much acne, you can still tell i have acne skin. know what i mean?

i can also notice my chest and back starting to clear up, but my chest hasn't quite gotten to low-cut top status yet.

so yeah, three whole weeks and i have definite improvement. depending on how things keep going, maybe i'll only need it for four months. i almost feel bad that my acne is clearing up so soon, because i see so many other people waiting and waiting and seeing very slow progression. i guess it's a good thing, though.

alright, check out my pics for this week in my gallery. till next time :)

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If you're still looking for a good moisturizer, I'm using Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion. It's actually not specifically for your face, which normally would bother me, but now that I'm on Accutane, I feel like it doesn't really matter. I like it because it feels very hydrating without being too heavy or greasy. Some of the heavier lotions I've tried just sit on top of my face, which feels nasty.

Also, I worked out a ton through my first two courses of Accutane, and now that I'm on my third, I'm not planning to change. Your body will let you know if you overdo it, so I wouldn't stop working out prematurely. That said, use common sense and don't try to push through the pain.

Good luck with your course! It looks like things are going really well for you.

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Hey Kat! Thanks for checking out my log. Looks like you're already seeing improvements just 3 weeks in! That's great!!! Hopefully it just continues to get better from here. Just don't panic if you see a few pimples pop up because that just means Accutane is doing it's job. As for those redmarks, those will fade with some time. Patience is key on Accutane!!! ;) Anyway, all the best with your treatment! I will check back in soon!

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day 25

ah, my first month is starting to draw to a close. today somebody told me that my skin was looking better... victory.

today my body was so achy that i didn't do anything all day except lie in bed and play video games... how pitiful. i really hope its not from the accutane, and that instead its from overdoing it at the gym. if i were hurting this bad at one month, there's no way i'd be able to take four months.

BUT, on the positive side of things, my skin is doing great. still not perfect... i have plenty of red spots, and certainly some active acne (lots of little bumps, not really to the point where i can count them yet). blackheads still seem to be popping out.

i need to get bloodwork tomorrow. last time i got it done i had a bruise on my arm for two weeks. for fear of looking like a heroin addict, i hope that doesn't happen again.

by the way, thanks for all of the recent support, guys. it's really motivating and puts a big smily on my face :D

till next time, party people.

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day 27

hey all, bad-ish news: yesterday, after getting my blood taken after i woke up, i decided to go to the gym. afterwards, i got the worse migraine of my life. i am prone to them, although i don't really know what triggers them, so it's not like i've never gotten one before. this one, however, had me in bed all day. naps and advil didn't get rid of it (even though they always do), so i really just had to lie in bed all day. i thought and thought and then realized... DUH, i didn't have anything to drink before i went the the gym, and then i lost water through sweating and only had a bit to drink while at the gym. this probably wouldn't have been such a big problem in the past, but since i'm so dry now, i guess the dehydration did me in. agh. que horrible. but anyway, i think (hope) it's gone now, after a full night of sleep.

um, have any of you noticed that you don't have to wash your hair as much while on accutane? i'm kind of ashamed to say this, but i haven't washed my hair since tuesday. i used to wash my hair every other day, but it honestly isn't even greasy now after 4 full days. kind of gross, yeah, but also pretty sweet.

skin is pretty consistent and ok. i'll post pics tomorrow.

have a wonderful day!

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day 29

almost the end of my first month! yayyy.

so i have my first real follow up appointment tomorrow with my derm. i've made a lot of progress, and my skin is really looking great, so i hope that she doesn't want to stop the course earlier or bring down my dose.

i'm debating on whether or not i should tell her about the really bad headache/puking episode i had the other day. they are the symptoms of that so-called "increased brain pressure" that you can get while on accutane, but at the same time i think i was just verrry dehydrated. bah, i don't know.

anyway, one of the best feelings is being able to run my fingers across my forehead and have it be super smooth. my forehead was the part of my acne i hated the most because it was the most stubborn - i always had little bumps all over it. now it feels absolutely great. the only problem with it are the blackheads, but they'll be out soon enough.

i missed my first pill last night. i know it's no biggie, but i prided myself in the fact that i had never missed one. oh well.

i'll let you all know how the appointment goes :)

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