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punkrockprincess

Hoping that the third time's a charm

Smart move stoping for a few days till you got better, I'm sure your liver will thank you! Sorry to hear that you skin didn't approve break, but I'm sure it'll forgive you soon. I hope the laser treatments start showing you some results, definetely bring it up next time your there. I don't know much about it, but maybe they could use it on a higher setting? Looking forward to the pics!

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Jan 26th - 1.5 months

Jeeze I suck with the updating thing, my life has gotten insanely busy and I although I often THINK about updating, I just as often fail to get to it. Sorry to those who are following along!

ANYWAYS.. I've experienced a little setback after restarting Accutane after my throat infection, in that I had another mini initial breakout type of thing. Definitely had a good 8-10 come up in these past two weeks, and most were the really red swollen cysty type :( that refuse to come to a head and drain so they take forever to heal. I think I may be coming to the end of things now, thankfully though, as I only see a few more tiny under the skin plug thingies and they don't appear to be getting infected.

I also had my third laser treatment. She zapped me pretty good again, although she avoided the active breakouts because it is just way too painful on those spots :(. But I think the laser has helped at least a little, for the older red/purple/brown marks. It's hard to tell as I see myself every day and have not been overly great about taking pics unfortunately.

Otherwise I'm tolerating okay. I had bloodwork done yesterday so I'll get results tomorrow hopefully. Sides are same old, managing the lips with the Prevex and lots of Vaseline, and trying to drink as much water as possible. One new thing I've noticed is I seem to be flushing a lot - my cheeks get SUPER red. I have had this happen in the past too, I think it may be due to the Accutane + wind irritation (it is still ridiculously cold with a ridiculous windchill where I live). So I'm not sure what to make of that. I may try a gentler cleanser and see how that does. I also only use moisturizer semi regularly because with my toner I don't get very dry, but maybe I should start with that.

Hope everyone is doing well, I'm hitting my bed, haha!

Best,

Lisa

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Hi there!

I just wanted to say hi. I'm also on accutane. It will be 2 months on Thursday. I'm 30 and it's my 1st course, hearing it's your 3rd sounds a LOT to me so I just hope it works for you. For good. I forgot to do my blood test on time so we pretty much had them done at the same time.

It is cold here where I live but not half as cold as Canada! And I must say, with the snow and the cold and everything, the skin feels raw even with sunblock and moisturizer. It's bad....

I was thinking, did you ever have your ovaries checked? I mention it because I used to have that problem and it caused my acne first. I overwent a 10-year hormone treatment and it healed my ovaries. Acne came back after it but you may want to look into that because many girls have no idea they may have an ovarian pb. That could solve your pb for real.

Take care, good luck to you!!!

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Day 53

Perrine - thanks so much for your comments, I really hope this is the last time, too! I think it is going to have to be, regardless. The cold really is harsh, isn't it? I don't think my skin has been holding up to it too well either. I was wanting to have my hormones checked but my doctor said that since I am on the birth control pill, that the levels wouldn't tell them much. Maybe I should consider going off the pill and having myself tested. I feel like I may have ovarian issues or hormonal issues, since I was quite late to get my first menstrual cycle and I had a lot of cramping and pain for months before it first came. I will talk to my doctor about it, so thank you for your recommendation! I wish you all the best on the Accutane, also!

Update time..

Well I am a little down today - I thought things were calming down but I am still breaking out and they are pretty big and red and take a LONG time to heal. My red/purple mark collection is seriously accumulating and despite having 3 laser tx done so far, I'm not sure if they are really helping THAT much. I will have to mention it to them next time I go. I guess I am just going to have to keep hanging in and waiting it out. I also feel a little bit of a sore throat which really sucks since I just recovered from that horrible throat infection. On top if it, I went to get my hair done today to pick me up and she ended up cutting me a little shorter than I wanted and now I'm missing my longer hair and I feel no better! Also the cold here makes my red marks look PURPLE and they show clear as day through make up - anyone else in cold climate countries experience this?! On the upside, my doc didn't call this week which means bloodwork is just fine, so at least my body is doing well :). Otherwise, I am gonna have to keep on keeping on.. hope everyone out there in Taneland is doing well!

Lisa

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Feb 11/09

Ahh so I suck at updating - sorry to anyone who reads this! I have been busy as hell with school and other stuff, so I have barely even had time to worry about my skin, nevermind update my log! That being said - things are definitely calming down. I had my first breakout today after like 1-2 weeks of clearness. So overall it's definitely entering the healing stage, which is good. I pretty much just wake up every day, get on some makeup to cover up redmarks, and go about my business. I'm concerned by how slowly the red marks seem to be healing though (even with this expensive laser thing that's supposed to be helping). Not sure why it's taking so long, perhaps the Accutane is slowing my healing.

Anyways, even though I'm not happy with it and have a long way to go to get to where I was before, it is manageable at least. And, with being so busy I don't have the headspace to stress about it. As long as I'm not getting a metric f***tonne of new breakouts every other day, I'm good for the time being, hah. Now it's mainly just the waiting game. I do need to get up pics and I've got some hanging around but I continue to have computer problems (laptop is crashing AGAIN and needs to go for fixing) and I am just super busy. But I promise I will try to get them up here before too long.

Otherwise, sides are pretty much the same and manageable. I haven't had a dosage adjustment yet as I forgot to book an appt with my doc! Was supposed to have one on Friday past, so I have to call the office tomorrow. I imagine she might bump me up to 70 mgs from the 40 mgs I am taking now, since my skin has settled. Kinda wanting the bump but sort of not too. I want to be done with this course ASAP but I don't want another IB because I've already had one and then a mini-second one after being sick. Also concerned about the effect on my joints and stuff. Currently I've been riding my horse 3-4 times a week and back and joints are great. I've been slacking the gym the past two weeks, but before that I ran a pretty intense 5k and felt great. So no complaints there. Biggest trouble is the freakin Tane lips! My boyfriend gave me a great chapstick that works ridiculously well and I KEEP losing it - then I steal another one from him and lose that!! Arghh! It works just as well as the Prevex stuff I was using, too, so it was super convenient. I know it's around here somewhere.. haha. Anyways, I also don't want those to get worse due to dosage increase :( but I think I'm gonna have to bite the bullet. I'll update once I've seen my doc.

Alright enough of me rambling on. Hope all's well for everyone else out there in Tane land!

Lisa

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good luck, i was one accutane once and it only worked temporarily for me, I see that your taking it a 3rd time and I hope it clears you for good. I just dont think accutane will work for me again if it didnt help me before. Do you have any permanent side effects? sometimes I think i developed A.D.D. from accutane

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Haha, we seem to be having the same problem with updating regularly. I know what you mean about just being distracted by other things, once you're skin starts clearing up you just don't think about it anymore. I'm happy to hear you don't seem to be having any really dreadful side effects! Hopefully the increase doesn't bring any of those out. I am sorry to hear that the lasar treatments aren't helping much! Maybe try some topicals? The MaMa and GC seem to be doing their job on me, maybe one of them is worth a shot. I'm sure you'll find something that works sooner or later, fingers crossed it'll be sooner!

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1 year post update!

Hey all! Apparently I stopped posting my progress after a month; disappointing! Anyways, as always Accutane worked it's magic the third time around and cleared me up fairly quickly. I think I was looking pretty decent by two or three months in from what I can remember. My course ended June 2009 as I did the low dose long course thing that seems to agree with me.

Interestingly, as has been the case for my previous courses, I have not experienced total remission. The never-failing trend is that I start off very clear and then slowly, it starts coming back. Initially, just non-inflamed spots that come and go on the order of a day or two, and don't leave behind lasting red marks. Once the warmer weather started to hit here in Canada (I'd say about May) I started getting some inflamed stuff and more non-inflamed stuff. And so on, from there. It is frustrating to be breaking out and accumulating more red marks and scars after going through three courses of Accutane. Change of season has always been a big skin trigger for me (one of the few I know of) so this is not entirely unexpected.

Additionally, Tazorac seems to not agree with me! I used Tazorac in the PM (Clindoxyl gel in the AM) religiously this time right from the end of my course till now, and it has not managed to keep my acne fully under control. My doc kept bumping up the strength, and still no luck. I stopped using it two weeks ago or so to do a facsimile of Dan's regimen (applying lots of Clindoxyl twice daily) because that seemed to be helping more, and then I made the mistake of trying to alternate with one night of the Tazorac. Bad idea! I've had a sizeable breakout now as a result, including two cysts which I RARELY get (huge, under the skin, painful, leave a purple mark/bruise). Overall, NOT impressed at all. Needless to say I'm doing the Clindoxyl 2x/day and have put the Tazorac away.

I also consulted again with my laser derm back in May I think.. and he looked at me like I was a total whackjob and said: "Your acne is 0.1 on a 10 scale. You don't have an acne problem. But if you want to be perfectly clear I will do Smoothbeam on you. Think about it and call me if something changes; otherwise I feel you are being managed well." So obviously feeling pretty goofy I didn't book anything right away, but now that I've gotten two cysts within the last month, I'm getting nervous. Ever since my first huge breakout prior to my first Accutane course, I've been terrified of reverting to that state. It sounds extremely superficial, but this is both a physical and mental problem for me now. Regardless, my acne is definitely back in mild/moderate form and despite being a broke ass student I am going to go for it. I'm not at the point where I'd be tempted to ask for Accutane, and I'm probably better off trying this and going from there. I don't know if a 4th course is advisable (I doubt 3 was advisable.. hah). I also have some minor scarring (another 0.1/10 apparently) that I would like to address and obviously Accutane precludes that.

Okay so this is getting super long-winded. Part of me doesn't care cause I needed to talk all this out and get it off my chest. Acne has been such a long standing issue an a constant source of insecurity in my life. I haven't felt 100% great about myself in a long time. I know perfection doesn't exist but I'm the "die trying" type so I know that I probably will never stop making efforts to improve my skin.

Anyways, tomorrow I'm gonna schedule an app't for my first Smoothbeam tx. I've had some sun exposure this weekend but I no longer am able to tan on my face (thanks Accutane + topicals + all other shit I've used) so hopefully that's ok. The last thing I want to do is more damage. Unfortunately one my jobs this summer entails being outside; nothing else I can do about it. Have to start being more diligent w the sunscreen but I hate putting anything extra on my face. I'm going to have to deal.

Anyways folks will keep you all posted. I am also going to request a hormone profile when I go for my physical this week; I think there's something out of whack there. We will see.

Best to everyone on Tane etc at the moment; if you have any questions about it feel free to post I am a pro at this point, ahahaha.

L

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May 31/2010 - mama needs her haterade..

Okay so I dunno if anyone is reading at the moment but I feel like updating so I will!

First Smoothbeam tx is scheduled for this Wed, 9 am. I booked the day off work to recover, apparently my face will be red for a day or two. Not the biggest issue, my face is already always a little red from all the bloody topicals that don't work 100% anyways! I miss being on Accutane and not having to do the topical thing and have my skin be relatively normal-coloured asides from some minor Tane-burn. It pisses me off that I have to take time off work for this, and I feel even worse because I'm looking forward to not having to go in and being able to hide out a bit at home. Rough!

Skin status: Rt side = 1 healing, 2 tiny blocked pores. A couple red marks. Lt side = inflammed spot on cheek/jaw, inflammed spot on side of chin, 2-3 healing cysts or spots, and at least 10 red marks. Getting to the point where makeup does not cover even 80% of stuff. The chin spot came up quite quickly yesterday and itched alllll day today and came to a head. Needless to say once 530 hit I quicktimed it out of work and went home to perform some minor elective surgery - haha. I actually prefer when this happens as draining tends to make spots resolve much faster. I expect it'll be decently coverable by tomorrow.

Anyways I think that's all for now. I have a bunch of shizz I have to get done and it is already 715.. I have been avoiding doing anything and instead updating and checking my mirror (as if anything would have changed..). My horse has had 3d off and badly needs a schooling and my friends are watching the hockey game tonight too. Def need to do the barn, maybe not the game cause I feel shitty. Weather is getting bad here too, giving me a pressure headache. Alright I'm done bitching.. mama needs her haterade today apparently ahaha.

Hope all of you are doing well!

L

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June 1 2010 - good day/bad day..

SO today started off pretty decently.. skin seems to be calming down, etc etc. Then when I got in after my physical I noticed a tiny spot on my right cheek in a place I normally don't break out :( hopefully it stays small and goes away. Also one of the little plugs can out and one might be erupting, I picked it just now - bad idea probably. Otherwise all else is sorta the same; got a potential on the left cheek again, but fighting it off with Clindoxyl.

Otherwise, Doc says my hormones probably are OK, but is going to have my try Yaz BCP instead of the Ortho Tricyclen which I have been on for the last 6-7 years. We will see. Otherwise PSYCHED for my first tx tomorrow!

Now off to shower and go see Sex and the City with my best friend!

And.. next person who reads this better be leavin some coments, just no hating ;) haha

L

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June 2, 2010 - Moment of truth!

Hey all - so I had my first SB treatment this morning; here are the details..

Pre-tx: Went with freshly washed face + BioOil moisturizer. The nurse took a bunch of photos of my skin with this VISIA machine; apparently this thing takes SUPER detailed photos and also allows you to visualize sun damage and dermal damage that you can't see from the outside. She never showed me my photos but I guess I will compare those to my after photos in a couple of months. Afterwards she applied Emla topical anaesthetic and I waited 45 min for it to fully take effect (it felt weird!).

Tx: My nurse applied ice to each area of my face before treating it and the pain was very very tolerable. Way less than the Cynergy laser! I was definitely relieved about that. It did hurt more over the active spots I have. Throughout the tx the nurse said my skin was handling the treatment well and only turning a little pink.

Post-tx: Looking at my face after tx I definitely noticed pink/red spots in tracks - the nurse applied a strong sunscreen and mineral makeup for me and that made a huge difference! The makeup was GloMinerals, and I would have considered buying it but it was like 70 bucks a pop! I am definitely glad I took the day off work - the track marks didn't really subside till about 5 hours later. I can still see a bit of them on one cheek, I'm hoping it'll be cleared up 100% by tomorrow cause I gotta go back to work! However, I redid my makeup and it isn't noticeable. Also, microswelling is AWESOME, haha - my tiny scars look awesome/filled in, but I know this will revert. Otherwise, the active spots I have are maybe a little better. Without makeup I'm still lookin pretty rough, though.

Will update soon!

L

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Is this some sort of laser for scars or sunspots. If its for scars I can relate to you im going through the same thing right now except i did fraxel repair which im assuming is probably more intense and riskier than what you did. I have a post about it in my profile if your interested with pictures but good luck with your procedure. I really dont even know what you did though i looked it up and i dont get any type of results that relate to this. Wait is this about accutane?im confused?

Edited by Help Wanted

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June 3, 2010 - taking it day by day

So things are holding steady over here. My skin has fully recovered from the tx (read: no more track mark red spots - thank god!!!). I did get a tiny pustule Rt side chin area right underneath the other one that I picked that got big and gross but has now healed. I think that's probably the laser bringing stuff up. Another tiny tiny bump Lt nasolabial area as well. But overall, other actives seem to be subsiding. A few plugs under the skin on my cheeks are concerning me and I feel like the Clindoxyl will keep them at bay, but it almost just keeps things in a state of stasis but doesn't actually clear out the plugs? I dunno, anyways I'm still slappin that stuff on in copious amounts. Otherwise my skin does seem a bit smoother; if the marks from the Lt cheek breakout weren't there I'd probably be a hell of a lot happier.

Help Wanted - the Cynergy laser that is listed in the topic of my post is a pulsed-dye laser that I had done during my last course of Accutane. It is non-ablative and targets vascular/red marks and brown marks that remain after you've had a pimple. Currently, I'm almost a year out from Accutane and having Smoothbeam treatments to help control residual breakouts and to improve my mild scarring. It is non-ablative, so yeah, less intense/risky than what you've had done. I was interested in the Fraxel actually, so I will check out your log. Thanks for posting :)

Hope everyone's well!

L

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Your's is one of the logs I first started reading when I came here a week ago - didn't realise it was a year or so ago since you last updated!

Anyway, now that you're back, I hope things are getting better! Your skin sounds good, but it's a pain that you've had three Accutane courses and are still getting some blemishes. At least it sounds relatively under control. I hope the laser is working out for you!

Edited by 2DZebra

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Hey all,

Sooo I see some views but nobody has posted yet so I'm still replying to myself but that's cool!! Anyways just a brief update.. on the skin front, things are maintaining at a steady state of crappy! Basically I get a breakout, it starts to heal, a few days pass, I get another breakout, it starts to heal, and repeat. The end result is an ever-accumulating collection of post inflammatory marks, for sure.. hopefully no new scars, I already have some mild scarring in a few places from prior to my first course of Accutane although apparently I'm the only one who notices it.. All I'm doing at the moment is using my Neostrata glycolic toner 8% in the morning, and clindet (clindamycin phosphate solution) pads twice a day, and spot treating with a really mild benzoyl (Benoxyl 5%) which my skin semi-tolerates (i.e. turns me red but not beet red!).

Otherwise, I am just trying to sit tight and keep a brave face on and continue to do all the things I normally do in my life. I have noticed that I am feeling much more self conscious and each morning I have to kind of give myself a push to get going. I am definitely down on myself and that bothers me.. normally I am very upbeat and social, always with a full schedule and loving what I'm doing. Now I'm feeling increasingly preoccupied and worried about my skin and it's taking away from those things. Overall, I cannot wait to get on Accutane!!

Hey!

My doctor never mentioned anything about having to have my blood work done

Anyways I'm rambling now. The last thing with any point that I wanted to do was set up a little time line of what'll be coming up in this log in the next little while (mostly for myself :P considering none of you have posted yet!!). So...

Nov 11 - saw doc at my regular acne clinic, got req for bloodwork

Nov 14th - saw laser dermatologist, booked Cynergy tx, stopped Minocin

Nov 18th - go for bloodwork - hmm that means I actually have to stop eating like.. right NOW! Damn! I was going to do my bloodwork later because doing it tomorrow means that it'll be right on the two week mark before my menstrual cycle starts, and the doc says it has to be done within two weeks. I'm sure it'll be fine. And seeing as how I just spilled the remainder of the glass of juice I stopped drinking when I realized the time.. I'll take that as a sign to stop eating/drinking anything other than water and go for poking tomorrow morning.

Nov 20th - if I can get up the nerve to take and post pics of the shittiness that is my face, I will do so

Nov 21st - first Cynergy tx

Dec 2nd - "that time of the month" begins.. usually not a fun time, but this time I'll be happy when it comes around!

Okay so that was exhausting and congrats if anyone is actually still reading.. this was a useful thing for me to do as I tend to be a bit haphazard/fly by the seat of my pants. At least now I have a plan.

Cheers to all!

Lisa

Hey!

My doctor never mentioned anything about having to have my blood work done 2 weeks before my period. Do u know why ur doctor has u do that??? Also my doctor only had me stop my antibiotics the day before i started accutane. .....i am getting worried that my doctor doesnt know what she is doing.....

But anyways i wish u the best of luck this time. At least things are looking u hill with ur face not breaking out as bad as the last treatment.......I also know where u are coming from about the scars. there a bitch. I will have a major breakout it will clear up and then there will be all these scars that look like acne and then once my face is semi clear with fresh scars it will break out again it is a pain in the ass....but hopefully my first accutane treatment will get it done and over with!

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16 June 2010 - 2 weeks post

Hey kids..

Today is 2 weeks since my first Smoothbeam and let me tell you, it has been a wild ride. The first week was absolutely a disaster.. my skin went crazy! My right side which was previously clear got 2 decent sized papules and a handful of smaller spots. My left side got another 2 cysts and a few pustules. It was ROUGH. I actually peaced out on work last Wed cause I was so embarassed to go in looking like that, and booked app'ts to see both my regular skin doc and my laser derm.

I was pretty much set on going back on Accutane for a fourth time and in fact, got my bloodwork and preg test done on Friday morning. They also changed my topical because the Clindoxyl I used was obviously doing shitall to help me.. I'm now using Benzamycin instead. Thankfully, the Benzamycin appears to be helping. My laser derm strongly suggested I stay the course (obviously, because I'm paying), but that if my skin went any crazier or if after the second tx I still got crazy breakouts, that I could do the Accutane. Thankfully, things appear to have continued to calm down over the last week, and now it is mainly more lovely redmarks and I'm sure more scars that I'm going to have to deal with.

I am playing it touch and go.. any sign of my skin going crazy again and I am going right back on Accutane - screw sides I just don't care. Otherwise, if things stay calm I will go for a second Smoothbeam in two weeks.

On the upside, Smoothbeam does tighten your face quite a bit. I'm not very oily so I can't comment on oil production. I'm aware that the mode of action of Smoothbeam is to shrink the sebaceous glands, which is exactly what Accutane does although by a different mechanism. A consequence of this can be breakouts, where anything that was hiding beneath can get pushed up to the surface as the gland closes. I'm attributing my skin's craziness to that and hopefully the worst is over. I really liked the tightening effect and I feel that in the long term I could improve my very mild scarring, which regardless of its degree really bothers me. If I could get it to the point where it is barely noticeable to me, I would be very happy.

That's it for me guys.. I will update again after my second Smootbeam. I am trying not to obsess too much over my face because I know I totally do. So I'll update in 2 week intervals as much as I can.

Hope everyone is doing well!

L

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Hey guys! I don't know if anybody is actually reading this but hey, maybe it will be informative for someone in the future or whatever. Anyways, it gives me a way to track my progres..

So, second Smoothbeam tx was done a week ago. At the time I had 1 cyst Rt jawline, and not much else going on thankfully. The tx itself was the same deal as the first time. I feel like my redness cleared up faster, or maybe I just wasn't as aware of it because I knew it would fade and that it wasn't anything to worry about.

Otherwise, skin has been fairly good since the treatment. Cysts seem to have settled down; now I'm just getting the tiny pinprick bumps which are more or less non-inflammatory (thankfully). The clinic did tell me this is common after the laser and should stop happening once I'm further along in my treatment course.

Overall, though, starting to be happier with the results. Redmarks are still taking their sweetass time to fade but things are starting to repair. I'm annoyed at the setback especially in terms of addressing my scarring, but hopefully once all's said and done, I will have perceivable improvement. Still don't really notice too much textural improvement - maybe a bit in my old scars? The ones I got from this breakout are still healing so it is too early to tell. Pores might be smaller too but I tend to have decent pores anyways.

I am still using the Benzamycin as well, and it seems to be keeping things in check. I incorporated my Neostrata glycolic toner again, which I had ditched before. Also not really doing as much BioOil in the AM these days, I just use sunscreen for sun protection and moisturizer! I still mix it with the Benzamycin in the PM though.

Hope everyone's doing well!

L

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