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Wow, so I'm finally on this stuff! Never thought it would actually happen. :dance:

Background:

I'm 24/f, and have had mild-moderate acne since I was 14. It wasn't so bad then (I think), but got worse in high school. Tried Proactive during that time which made my skin worse. I have sensitive skin so I have to watch what I use. Got on BCP when I was 17 and just stopped them recently last Oct when I was 23. I'm tired of BCP and don't plan on going back on them after my course. They mess with too many things, and there are many other ways to not get pregnant. I've tried a lot of things in the past for the acne- various antibiotics, topicals like Differin, BCPs, over the counter crap. My first derm visit kinda sucked. The doc came in, barely glanced at my face, and started writing out prescriptions. I was 19 and didn't know a thing about treatments so I just let him go. I never went back to him.

So this past Oct after I stopped the BCP, it took about 3-4 months before my skin started to breakout real bad again. I haven't had it this bad since high school, I think. Even starting to breakout on my body again (the BCP cleared that up when I started on it years ago). Since I'm taking classes this semester, I'm back under my parents' insurance. Went to a derm (different one, I'm in a different state now) and after about 5 minutes was prescribed a generic Accutane! I thought I didn't look that bad... but whatever. The nurses and doc were super nice and it really surprised me because I thought I was going to have to fight for the Accutane (I already knew I wanted it before the appt). They asked what I wanted and I told them I had been doing research on Accutane that I thought it would be the best course of treatment for me. They agreed! So.... the doc was way cool. He cracked jokes that the ipledge was stupid and that it's ridiculous that Accutane is so hard to get and that years from now people won't be buying crack on street corners- it'll be Accutane! Heh. He said that Proactive doesn't really work after a few weeks anyway and that the makers know this because he actually knows one of them and they admitted it...

SO, I was signed up for the ipledge stuff, given a prescription for some antibiotic that I didn't have to take (they said I needed to buy it though because they had to show the insurance co that I had tried other things before Accutane, since it had been so long since I last tried anything), started my YAZ, and proceeded to wait the month before I was able to go back to the derm for my Accutane prescription (40 mg for the first 2 wks and then they are ramping it up to 80 mg for the rest of the 5 month course).

Went back last Monday, got the prescription, and did all the freakin ipledge stuff at the doc's office, and then tried to fill the prescription. Ran into some problems with insurance needing a pre-approval from the doctor's so I had to wait a few more days. FINALLY got my Accutane Friday night!

DAY 4

Feeling alright. The first night I took the pill, I got a headache. Not a real bad one- just a dull, throbbing one. Went away the next day. I think my body was just trying to get used to the medicine. I also experienced feeling a bit nauseous, but then I drank a bunch of water and felt better.

I'm taking all psych classes right now, so I don't feel that worried about all the scary scary side effects like depression and suicide since I'm studying them. Things always seem less scary when you are informed of the problem, why it can happen, and what treatments are used to combat such things. :cool:

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Wow, so I'm finally on this stuff! Never thought it would actually happen. :dance:

Background:

I'm 24/f, and have had mild-moderate acne since I was 14. It wasn't so bad then (I think), but got worse in high school. Tried Proactive during that time which made my skin worse. I have sensitive skin so I have to watch what I use. Got on BCP when I was 17 and just stopped them recently last Oct when I was 23. I'm tired of BCP and don't plan on going back on them after my course. They mess with too many things, and there are many other ways to not get pregnant. I've tried a lot of things in the past for the acne- various antibiotics, topicals like Differin, BCPs, over the counter crap. My first derm visit kinda sucked. The doc came in, barely glanced at my face, and started writing out prescriptions. I was 19 and didn't know a thing about treatments so I just let him go. I never went back to him.

So this past Oct after I stopped the BCP, it took about 3-4 months before my skin started to breakout real bad again. I haven't had it this bad since high school, I think. Even starting to breakout on my body again (the BCP cleared that up when I started on it years ago). Since I'm taking classes this semester, I'm back under my parents' insurance. Went to a derm (different one, I'm in a different state now) and after about 5 minutes was prescribed a generic Accutane! I thought I didn't look that bad... but whatever. The nurses and doc were super nice and it really surprised me because I thought I was going to have to fight for the Accutane (I already knew I wanted it before the appt). They asked what I wanted and I told them I had been doing research on Accutane that I thought it would be the best course of treatment for me. They agreed! So.... the doc was way cool. He cracked jokes that the ipledge was stupid and that it's ridiculous that Accutane is so hard to get and that years from now people won't be buying crack on street corners- it'll be Accutane! Heh. He said that Proactive doesn't really work after a few weeks anyway and that the makers know this because he actually knows one of them and they admitted it...

SO, I was signed up for the ipledge stuff, given a prescription for some antibiotic that I didn't have to take (they said I needed to buy it though because they had to show the insurance co that I had tried other things before Accutane, since it had been so long since I last tried anything), started my YAZ, and proceeded to wait the month before I was able to go back to the derm for my Accutane prescription (40 mg for the first 2 wks and then they are ramping it up to 80 mg for the rest of the 5 month course).

Went back last Monday, got the prescription, and did all the freakin ipledge stuff at the doc's office, and then tried to fill the prescription. Ran into some problems with insurance needing a pre-approval from the doctor's so I had to wait a few more days. FINALLY got my Accutane Friday night!

DAY 4

Feeling alright. The first night I took the pill, I got a headache. Not a real bad one- just a dull, throbbing one. Went away the next day. I think my body was just trying to get used to the medicine. I also experienced feeling a bit nauseous, but then I drank a bunch of water and felt better.

I'm taking all psych classes right now, so I don't feel that worried about all the scary scary side effects like depression and suicide since I'm studying them. Things always seem less scary when you are informed of the problem, why it can happen, and what treatments are used to combat such things. :cool:

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lottielou: That's awesome! How are you liking it so far?

beachgirl59: Yea! Some company during all this...

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Day 7

I've been feeling sick for the past few days, and I have no idea if it's from the accutane or if I'm actually getting sick. I think it might be from the Accutane. Feeling sore and achy and nauseous. Drinking lots of water and trying to not stress about school- I've had so much to do lately... eh.

I'm also finally drying out a bit. My lips are going crazy. I don't think I've started the IB yet, but the spots I had before I started Accutane are now inflamed and painful... :doubt:

Have a few actives with a cluster of painful ones near my jaw... sigh. I'll post pics when I get the chance.

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DAY 9

Ok, so I've been getting mild headaches lately, but I'm pretty sure it's related to my dry eyes which started a few days ago. It's so annoying! I already had dry eyes before Accutane because I moved to a state with a higher altitude and that's dryer than where I'm originally from. SO. Yeah. Dry eyes and now mild headaches. I've been drinking a lot of water and using eye drops, plus I just got some eye ointment stuff to use at night. Whenever I read now for classes, I have to take frequent breaks so I don't tire my eyes. I feel like I can't get anything done! I'm going to make an appt for the eye doc just to be safe about the dryness.

STATUS:

2 cysts on my forehead, 1 on the left side of my face, and 1 bump on the left side that will probably turn into a mega whitehead. Good news- the clusterfuck of whiteheads on my jaw is slowly dying down. A few tiny whiteheads here and there. This probably isn't my IB.

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Hey thanks for the comment on my log! I'll be checking out your log from now on too, seeing that we started at the same time! :) Good Luck!!
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Hey thanks for the comment on my log! I'll be checking out your log from now on too, seeing that we started at the same time! :) Good Luck!!

Thanks!

Good luck to you! I'm on day 5 and I feel like CRAP. Tired, weak, headache, thirsty all the damn time and nauseated too. Ugh.....
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DAY 17

Well, the past week has been hard. Mainly because I got more cysts and the red marks from the breakout the previous week are still somewhat red. So makeup hasn't really been able to cover up the red marks all that well, plus the cysts (4 on my forehead) were reaching epic proportions. I was a good girl and didn't pick at those because I knew it was a lost cause. So at work I wore a hat all week to cover those bad boys up.

At the moment I still have 2 cysts on my left side, but they are getting smaller, and the redness is reducing. Now my left side is clear except for one small pimple. My forehead looks way better because the other day they had to be squeezed, mainly because I looked at one crossways and it popped itself. The others didn't take much convincing. So right now my face has a bunch of red marks and cysts here or there. I also noticed that my blackheads are starting to push out of my nose. This has got to be the weirdest thing I've ever seen my skin do before. I've had those for so long that it's odd to think that many people are sans blackheads...

Side-affects: Last weekend was bad- dry dry eyes that were causing mild headaches. It was so hard for me to read my school books and do the homework. I used a lot of eyedrops which I don't think is a good idea for me. They seem to dry my eyes out more. So I had to stop for awhile, and since I couldn't really do anything at all, I just slept. The problem went away after a day or two. Now I haven't used the drops since last weekend (I will in moderation, if need be) and the headaches are gone. Right now it doesn't even feel that I'm on anything. No pains, no aches, no dry eyes, skin is sorta dry, and lips mildly dry. Doing well so far!

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DAY 36

Hm, wow. Time's flying by! So far so good. No side effects at the moment other than dry lips and skin. Eyes aren't dry and are doing well. :dance: Had a derm appt on the 1st of April and got my dose upped to 60mg a day. On the 15th I have another appt and will probably go up to 80mg, and since I'm not experiencing any side effects, I think I'll be able to handle that dose. I guess my body plays well with heavy drugs... lol. I suppose looking back at that first month though I did notice that my concentration was a bit waning which is not a good thing when you're in the middle of a school semester, but you just really have to push yourself to get stuff done.

At the moment I have a little pustule on my temple, but everywhere else is clear! I do have some red marks only on ONE side of my face, but they're starting to lighten up. My right side has been clear for maybe 2 wks now while my left was having a breakout- now that was weird! I felt lopsided... Anyway, I think my IB is finally going away. :D

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Day..... 5 Days until complete with Iso!

Ok, now I know I haven't been that diligent about updating this thing. Actually, I barely wrote in here. But whatever. Here's the info about what has been happening during the past few months...

I would have to say that after the 2nd month, probably closer to 2 and 1/2 months, my skin stopped breaking out. For the rest of my course, I got the random small pimple here and there, but nothing too big. My redmarks are finally going away. I only use just a bit of concealer to cover them up. Throughout the course my face would flush, a lot. In the beginning this happened frequently, especially if someone would embarrass me. Very annoying. I got dry lips and skin, but that was remedied by using CeraVe lotion and the cream and Aquaphor on my lips. If I used those products regularly, I didn't have any problems. I drank a whole lot of water, everyday. I tried to run on our treadmill, but I had to cut this down dramatically because my heels and legs would just kill me. I couldn't walk all that well after exercising. Hopefully once I'm done with my course, I'll be able to workout again soon because I'm sure I've gained a bit of weight while on this stuff. I don't think it's because of the iso, but more because I've just been lazy, eating, and not working out. I haven't experienced any hair loss, but my hair has been really dry while on this. I only wash my hair a few times a week. My eyes would also get dry, but if I drink a lot of water then this isn't a problem. Other things- if my arms rubbed up against something rough, then there was a good chance my arms would break out with something like a rug burn. My hands and forearms definitely got beat and banged up throughout the course because I'm clumsy and accident-prone. Neosporin is the best for this problem. In the beginning it would be hard to concentrate on my schoolwork- I would space-out a lot, but this became less frequent as the months went by. I would tell myself it's just the medication and force myself to concentrate which mainly worked. :)

In the beginning of August, I started to experience really horrible headaches. After calling my derm and speaking to one of the nurses, she just told me to stop taking the iso for a few days and then start back up. She said that it might be because of other factors (ie allergies) and if the headaches start again, I should stop the iso and call them. I was really worried I would have to stop the medication, but thankfully, the headaches went away and stayed away. I think it was allergies, but anyhoo, no more problems.

From the beginning of May until the first week of June, I was in a different state, experiencing different weather. I went from a dry, hot climate to a humid, hot climate. I could definitely tell the difference on my skin. I didn't have to moisturize quite as much which was a nice change of pace.

Around that time (the end of May, I think), I stopped taking my birth control pills. I didn't really need them. I wasn't having sex and wasn't going to, and the last time I stopped my pills (last Sept or Oct), my face broke out bad a few months later, which is why I went on Accutane in the first place. My reasoning behind stopping them in May was that I didn't want to stop them after the course, and then my face start breaking out again. I wanted the Accutane to knock that out too before it had a chance to become a problem. I don't care for BCP that much. I was tired of the hormones affecting my body. Hopefully the Accutane makes enough of a difference to limit any future breakouts from stopping the pill.

Around the end of June (or July, I can't really remember), my blood tests for my liver came back a little high. So my derm made me eat differently for 2 weeks, then I came back in to get another test. It went down dramatically the second time, but honestly, I think they might have screwed up. I think the results before were 280ish, or at least in the 200 range. Then the repeat test showed that my results went down to 130ish. That sounds like too big of a leap. I mean, I basically ate nothing but protein, cheerios, oatmeal, and a few other random things like vegetables. Can eating like that really affect your liver THAT much? Hm. I'm skeptical.

I have been on Accutane now for about 6 1/2 months. It will be 7 months the beginning of Sept. My last derm appt is this Thursday, and I think he's going to call it quits for me, which I'll be happy about. My insurance runs out the end of this month too... My last, last derm appt should be at the end of next month for the final blood test. That I will have to pay out of pocket, which sucks, but I'm definitely glad that insurance paid for everything else (not including the $20 copay for appts and $10 for the Iso).

My skin has been clear for many months now, most of the redmarks gone. Accutane wasn't that bad to go through. It's just been a real adjustment more than anything. I was beginning to scar from the pimples before I went on Accutane. Now I only have the tiniest scar next to my nose. You can't really see it, but I can feel it. It doesn't really bother me though. And I didn't scar while on Accutane. I'm very glad I did it. It was hard, at first, but hopefully, now my skin will be clear or at least clear most of the time. I plan on using the same CeraVe cleanser and lotion after the course is over, and after a month or so off of the Iso, I will start with a preemptive acne treatment. I bought some of this mineral makeup stuff, Nocturne from Aromaleigh.com, that should help with future breakouts and beautify my skin in general. :dance:

I'll probably post a few more post-Tane stories in the coming months.

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