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UPDATED:My accutane journey (30mg a day since 1st Dec 09)

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Hi everyone, I've been reading this board for a while now and its been a God send because its great to read about everyone else's experiences with acne to compare etc. I'm not alone!!

I am on day 6 of accutane (30mg a day) so I thought I'd track my progress in a log since I enjoy reading everyone else's. Plus, if it gives one person hope at the end of it then it'll be worth it!

Quick summary: I've had bad acne for at least 10-12 years and I have tried all kinds of topical treatments and antibiotics which haven't really worked. So I have taken the plunge and agreed to try accutane because all the scary side effects and stories that I have heard about are nothing compared to how much I hate my skin.

So...day 6 and so far my skin is really bad and I'm having a breakout at the moment but that is no different than my pre-accutane days! My skin is still as oily as ever but my lips are slowly getting more dry by the day. I'm actually looking forward to the point where my skin gets drier just so I know that it is doing something!

Anyway, I'll update as much as I can with any improvements/disasters. :)

Edited by skinzzz
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Hey! Thanks for stopping by, I've been reading your log too :)

I haven't really much to update with except that my face is a complete mess! I'm not sure if its the accutane, my hormones or just the usual breakout I get, but its bad.

I have a work party on Saturday night and I am just praying that some of the acne clears up so it doesn't look so bad!

On another note, I have this thing with the mirrors in my house; in my bedroom my skin looks acceptable with make up on but then I go downstairs and look in that one and its horrifying! I think its the way the natural daylight shines on my face, it shows up EVERY imperfection in my skin. I'm not a fan of that mirror I have to say.

If this is my IB then I hope it goes away soon!!

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Day 18, wow!

My lips are drying out quite a bit now and they feel a bit sore. I'm applying vaseline way more than usual.

My skin is still a complete mess and I'm assuming its still the IB. Its a whole mix of different types of lumps and bumps; some are big swollen sore cysts while others are tiny under the skin bumps. I'm currently trying to avoid looking in any mirrors because its just horrible. I've got this big cluster of acne on my cheek that has been there for weeks as well, will they ever go away?!

Felt a bit tired this week as well, not sure of that has anything to to with the accutane though!

I go back to the derm on the 29th and I kind of hope they up my dose because I don't see anything much happening other than slightly dry lips.

Oh well, keep the faith!

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Day 23 and my skin is in a complete mess. This IB sucks! It seems as if pore in my skin is blocked with something, either a small under the skin bump or a massive, sore cyst.

I can safely say that my face has never been this bad in the many years of my acne history and although I'm really self-conscious at the moment, I know it will be worth it in the end. There are people out there with more serious problems than my skin complaint and I should be thankful.

So here's to staying positive!! :dance:

ps. Merry Christmas everyone.

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Day 28.

Good stuff:

My skin is no longer an oil slick like it was, my make up doesn't need re-applying by the end of the day which is amazing!

My hair doesn't need to be washed every day either which is unheard of!! I like my hair freshly washed everyday to be honest but I thought I'd try to go as long as possible before I felt it needed it and I would say I could have gone to day 4....but didn't.

Bad stuff:

I'm still breaking out like crazy and in the strangest places! I have had 2 hard (and painful) spots in my eyebrow!My chin is clearing up a little but my forehead looks really bad. My cheeks are as bad as ever and the cluster of old cysts is still there, hanging around all hard, dark and dry....will they ever GO?!

Got a bit of a rash/dry skin on the back of one of my hands but I don't mind that really.

My lips are getting worse by the day but I think the cold weather is making things worse to be honest. I can feel the start of a split forming in my bottom lip so I am smothering on the E45 and vaseline because its gonna hurt when that baby gets bigger.

I go back to the derm tomorrow and I have a feeling they will up my dose. If they do then I fear a further IB BUT if it means that it will help in the long run then bring it on!

Hope everyone had a great Christmas.

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Just checking in. Good luck with the journey. Trust me, the dryness and whatever else is totally worth it once you start seeing improvement, which I hope is SOON! Take care :)

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Hey thanks for the encouragement, it really means a lot!

I went for my appointment at the derm. They asked me what side effects I was experiencing, I had my pregnancy test and was sent off with my presciption.

They haven't increased my dose so I'm still on 30mg a day which I think is quite low but I'll trust my derm for now! When I told him my skin was worse and I hadn't seen any improvement, he basically tried to reassure me that lots of his patients were on accutane for anything up to 8 months so it could be a while before I notice any improvement.

My skin is still sucking big time. I'm avoiding all mirrors! (apart from when I have to put my make up on haha)

ps. Happy new year everyone :)

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Day 37 (I think!).

Skin is as bumpy as ever BUT I only have 3 active nodules/cysts (whatever they are, I dunno) which isn't a lot for me. The cluster of hard lumps on my righ cheek has settled a lot and I think they are actually clearing up (they've been there months). I bet I have jinxed myself now!! I usually have a massive breakout just before my period but I only got 1 active (big and painful but still...much better).

I have a slight rash on the backs of my hands but I don't care about that really.

Maybe the tane is starting to do its stuff!

ps. I have started taking pictures of my face for my own reference to track my progress (will take them every month), I'll probably post them at the end of my course.

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Your on a very similar dose to me! I started at 10 mg and in four weeks just went up to 40 mg. It's hard to read all the logs of ppl who see results right away! It has taken me about a month and I just feel like I'm now starting my course :P But I'm seeing similar results to you and I'm only 3 days behind you :) So Good Luck! Can't wait to see your progress! :D

And happy 2010 !

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Hey I have been trying to read as many logs as possible which is hard in itself but yeah, I was so excited to read the logs where people started seeing mega improvements right away and I had hoped that would be the same for me. Now I'm just being patient and as my derm said "its a long process".

Good luck with the course and happy new year to you too! Hopefully we'll both be writing good things in our logs more often as time goes on!

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Day 41.

So I said my right cheek was starting to clear up in my last update, obviously too good to be true. I have had a bad flare up in the same area, just adding to the general bumpiness and redness.

Just when I think the cyst/nodule is clearing up ad flattening out, it goes and raises its ugly head once again, often bringing new friends along with it! So annoying.

My left cheek is now clear of actives...at the moment anyway! The tiny bumps under my skin on my forehead are slowly getting less and less but I'm still getting nodular type spots here and there.

The rash on my hands has cleared up and my lips are pretty much as they were; keeping them managable with various stuff.

So still no major improvements on the acne front.

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I ended up writing something directed at you in my log... haha.

I hope you start seeing positive results soon. :) And glad your hands cleared up, mine still look ghastly.

Edited by AhMyFace
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Day 46.

Ohhh the natural light aka daylight! Daylight hates me...I look great in doors out of sight of the window, but then the light hits my face and its like where the eff did all those spots come from?!

My hands: the rash is back and much worse than before but I've been using a mild steroid cream. My face has seriously taken a hit in terms of dryness as well, I'm not sure why all of a sudden its actually peeling!?

The right side of my face is killing me. Its like I want to rip all that skin off and start again because of the mess its in. If that cleared up then my face would look a million times better overall but it continues to get worse.

The left side of my face is still clear (still has old acne marks but no actives).

My forehead has broken out a lot this week, but they always heal much faster than the other parts of my face.

I cut cows milk out of my diet and went on to soy milk but then I read something about how soy can lead some people to break out? I have definitely seen an increase in actives since I went onto soy. Man, what CAN we actually eat? Haha. Anyway, so now I'm onto rice milk which tastes kinda funky but I only have it with breakfast so I can deal with that.

I have these old pimples that just sit there all dry and show no sign in healing and going away so I have been spot treating them with sudocrem to see if it will help them heal up and just eff off and it seems to be working, they're flattening out at least. I'm trying so hard not to get any of the cream on other parts of my skin though in case it causes a breakout.

Anyway, not much to report really. Hope everyone is good!

Edited by skinzzz
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Day 50! (At least I think its day 50...)

So 50 days have passed, 50 WHOLE days and my skin still hasn't improved as much as I would like. Then again, if I had my way I wouldn't have a single blemish on my face at day 50 but who am I kidding?! I would say that I haven't had any new actives pop up to say hello in the last 2 days though which is good.

This week I have officially stopped:

a) Touching and picking at my face

b) Drinking Diet Coke (serious addiction)

c) Drinking milk and other cow related dairy products (I stopped this the other week)

d) Obsessing in the mirror. (Not stopped because that is impossible, but I have been doing it less)

e) Using a l'oreal studio effects green concealer to cover red marks because it hates my skin (more money spent on useless make up down the drain)

Oh I am also now using a cleanser from the Simple range because I didn't feel that washing my face was getting my make up off completely and I was so right!

Back to the derm next week for my regular pee into a pie dish and prescription. Question is, will they up my dose?

Oooh forgot to say that my back is so painful today! Accutane just loves to surprise me with the different side effects popping up at random!

Edited by skinzzz
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Day 52.

My back is killing me! I hope this goes away soon, I feel like an old lady whenever I bend down!

Not much to report today to be honest but I just wanted to say that my nose is sooo smooth! I swear I can't remember the last time it felt this good now all the crap has been pushed out of it! Now if only the rest of my pores would follow suit! I have to say though, my left cheek is looking good, I had one small pimple last week which cleared up quickly and now it is completely clear. It left a red mark but I can deal with that right now.

So now I am hoping another area of my face starts to get clear soon, my jawline maybe, or my forehead. I won't even bother hoping my right cheek clears up next, I'm sure the acne is spreading even more in that area of my face.

I've felt really tired these past couple of days as well, I have to force myself to get out of bed every morning and I sometimes feel drained during the day.

Anyway, its almost the weekend!

Edited by skinzzz
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Day 62 (wow)

I am cyst free!! I haven't had any new cysts for about a week which is amaaaazing for me. I have had about 5 little pimples but nothing major.

The right side of my face is flattening out quite a bit now, its still as red as hell but its less bumpy as the cysts have stopped coming. My face in general is still a million miles away from being smooth but I feel so much better compared to the first 7 weeks I was on accutane for.

I saw my derm and he said that he thinks I might have turned a corner but if I am not happy when I go back next month, he'll up my dose. I think he wants to keep me as low as possible for a longer period of time (8 months maybe).

Things are still taking ages to heal which is a pain in the arse but as long as the cystic acne stays the hell away, I don't care too much. I'm wondering whether its just the accutane working now or that cutting out dairy and my beloved diet coke has helped somewhat.

Fingers crossed that I really have turned a corner!

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Skinzzz: i've started on roaccutane since nov 09 n just recently my dosage is increased to 30mg per day. It's killing me as well as I have extremely dry skin now. The slightest smile would make me feel like my skin is tearing apart!! What's worse all the active acne, especially at my chin area..

I'm also starting a log here to monitor my condition.. Will continue to update regularly..

Do hope that we would both get well soon

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fel_han: I know what you mean with the active acne. My chin area got so bad at one point, it was so painful. 30mg suits me quite well I think, my side effects could be a lot worse and my derm said that if he does up my dose then they will get much worse. Good luck with your journey! I'll be sure to check your log. I find it useful to look back on to compare my progress.

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Ok so I dropped off the face of the earth for a while there (LIFE!!).


Month 1 = 30mg

Month 2 = 30mg

Month 3 = 30mg

Month 4 = 40mg

Month 5 = 40mg

Month 6 = 50mg

My derm said I will see my last 2 months out on 50mg (so 8 months in total).

My skin is completely clear, I no longer have any active spots on my face and it hasn't looked this good for about two years. My scars are now less red but still visable but I can deal with that as I think they should fade with time.

My side effects have been up and down; my lips basically peel off every day and I may not have any left in two months haha, my joints swell up now and again but can be dealt with by taking ibuprofen and paracetamol and my skin on the whole is slightly dry.

In conclusion...Accutane has saved my life, I only wish I had dared to take it years ago. Anyone who is thinking about it, please talk to your dermatologist and go for it if you feel you have tried everything else. Any good dermatologist will monitor you closely so any reactions or side effects you are unhappy with can be picked up on early and if all else fails...just stop taking it!

I only hope that my skin continues to improve and stay acne free after I finish up the treatment!

Good luck and much love to everyone on the accutane journey!!

Edited by skinzzz
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