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BellA3

Spiro Journal

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A little intro to who I am. I'm a 23 year old female, dealing with acne for at least 10 years now. I have tried nearly everything "over the counter" that I could think of or what was suggested to me to treat my acne but nothing has worked. Or if it worked, it worked for a few days, weeks, or months and then the acne was back again! I'm starting to think my acne is building its own immune system. So I finally saw a derm and he put me on Spiro. I'm taking 100mg a day & I started Dec 23. I'd say I have a moderate case of very stubborn acne.

Day 3

So, it's been 3 days on the Spiro and so far everything has been as expected. I'm already experiencing the initial breakout that I have heard mentioned on this board by people who have taken Spiro. So far it's nothing that wouldn't already be on my face... mostly cysts, but I don't usually get as many as I have now at once. That's why I'm assuming it's the pill causing it. I've noticed that my left arm gets a numbing kind of feeling sometimes and since Spiro is used for blood pressure, I'm assuming the numbing is due to that. Not sure if that should be a major concern yet. I've heard people complain of massive thirst and urination, but so far I haven't had a problem. I'm drinking water consistently throughout the day and always carry a water bottle with me. I think I urinate as often as anyone would if they drank as much water as I do lol The first 2 days I felt a little nauseous after taking the pill but today I felt fine! Also, I notice that I wake up and toss and turn for a while before I fall back asleep. I'm usually a great sleeper so for me to be randomly waking up at weird hours of the night is not normal for me. Must be Spiro :P It seems like my skin is healthier looking already in the places that have not broken out, so I'm hoping to see more of that in the future once things (hopefully) clear up.

I'm not sure how often I'll post but I figured if anyone can relate to my experience along the way then that's one less person who might feel alone in their journey :)

- B

Edited by BellA3

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heya .... please keep posting i think i have hormonal acne nd am planning on asking my derm for spiro at my first appointment on jan 6th !

i have had acne for tenyears aswell im 22 and i have really sensitive skin also... i had really good skin due to bp for years but ive been on mino cylcine for the last 3 yrs and it doesnt seem to be gettin that much better .... def has reduced about of cysts but not cleared me completely. ive got no spots on my forehead just on my cheeks and chin .... cyst and white heads ... was ur acne like this ?

how did you decide to go for spiro and the dosage ?

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heya .... please keep posting i think i have hormonal acne nd am planning on asking my derm for spiro at my first appointment on jan 6th !

i have had acne for tenyears aswell im 22 and i have really sensitive skin also... i had really good skin due to bp for years but ive been on mino cylcine for the last 3 yrs and it doesnt seem to be gettin that much better .... def has reduced about of cysts but not cleared me completely. ive got no spots on my forehead just on my cheeks and chin .... cyst and white heads ... was ur acne like this ?

how did you decide to go for spiro and the dosage ?

Actually, your acne sounds just like mine! The only time I breakout on my forehead is when I'm extremely stressed and anxious. I also breakout on my cheeks and chin area, mostly cysts and whiteheads. I didn't really decide myself to go on Spiro. I just went to the derm at my university and he suggested that I go on it because it seemed that my acne was hormonal since I was breaking out on the lower half of my face. He explained the side effects and everything but I did some of my own research before I filled my prescription. I actually came to this website and read the other Spiro blogs and other people's experiences and decided that I would try it. Good luck if you're able to get Spiro! :) Keep me updated on your experience as well!

- B

Edited by BellA3

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Whatever you do - don't give up. My skin was a mess, off and on, for five months when I first started spiro. I HATED leaving the house.

I have completely stopped using topicals (absolutely nothing goes on my skin aside from a light foundation in the morning and an eye cream in the evening) and have had no breakouts for a month now. I noticed at four months that I had no breakouts on my neck/chest etc but still some on my face - the ONE place I was still using topical drying agents. I don't recommend ANY drying agents for the skin because I believe they irritate and CAUSE breakouts.

More importantly, I now have no oil - no shine - no need to blot. Spiro is HEAVEN! :)

Drink plenty of water and get plenty of salt, keep up on your vitamins (I take B complex, fish oils, Vitamins A, C, D and E) and use a mild cleanser.

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Whatever you do - don't give up. My skin was a mess, off and on, for five months when I first started spiro. I HATED leaving the house.

I have completely stopped using topicals (absolutely nothing goes on my skin aside from a light foundation in the morning and an eye cream in the evening) and have had no breakouts for a month now. I noticed at four months that I had no breakouts on my neck/chest etc but still some on my face - the ONE place I was still using topical drying agents. I don't recommend ANY drying agents for the skin because I believe they irritate and CAUSE breakouts.

More importantly, I now have no oil - no shine - no need to blot. Spiro is HEAVEN! :)

Drink plenty of water and get plenty of salt, keep up on your vitamins (I take B complex, fish oils, Vitamins A, C, D and E) and use a mild cleanser.

Thanks JanieRose! The derm and my family doctor both told me it would take a while to see results so I'm gonna try and be patient. I'll definitely take into consideration your experience using topical drying agents. Right now I'm not using anything but a cream cleanser that fights blemishes, but I'll try to look for patterns in my breakouts & the use of topical treatments!

- B

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Day 6

I woke up today to two surprises -- clearer skin and memories of an effed up dream! I've heard people say they were having crazy, vivid dreams on this medication, but honestly, I would've had a dream like this regardless. In the past, my dreams have consisted of dinosaurs and the machine from "Space Odyssey 2001" (and I've never even seen that movie). Anyway... clearer skin! Went in the bathroom and noticed that the cysts that have been hanging around for the last few days are going away. Not only that, but the skin that isn't broken out still looks healthy and fresh. Even to the touch, it feels like smooth butter. :dance: On a lower note, I've been feeling dizzy and light-headed lately. I'm pretty sure it's the meds because if I ever feel like that, it's never on a consistent daily basis. Maybe I'm not drinking enough water? Is my blood pressure too low? Anyone else ever have this issue? Well, I'm pretty happy with the results so far. I know I'm not supposed to notice a big change for another few months, but I'm definitely noticing change. My body is amazing... not necessarily in a physical sense, but more so for what it's able to do. So I think my body is just adapting well to the Spiro. No new breakouts over the last 3 days! There are about 6 cysts on my face (and one really annoying one just under my ear... grrr) but only 3 of them are really noticeable at this point... can easily be covered with some makeup. No whiteheads! That's an improvement since there's always at least one on my face at any given time. Should I not get too excited just yet? It's still early in the game, but hopefully I'm in the clear (pun intended) :pray:

- B

Edited by BellA3

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Yes Bella drink more water!! It should help with the dizziness.. and you should find that your body will adjust after a few weeks..

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Day 11

So, everything is going along steadily... nothing new to update really! However, I am considering going on a lower dose of Spiro. Not sure I can handle how light-headed 100mg makes me feel :( Especially since my job requires me to be on my feet all day. I had my dad take my blood pressure since he's in the medical field and knows how to do that kinda stuff, and my blood pressure definitely dropped. 10 points... but he said it was still within a healthy realm. My blood pressure has been the same for as long as I can remember -- years! -- so for it to drop, it's definitely unnatural and my body is not happy about it :wacko: I'm afraid going on a lower dose isn't gonna work out as well as the 100mg because as far as my skin goes, it's helping. But at what cost? As Shells suggested, I may just try to drink more water but at this point I'd have to have a machine be constantly pumping it down my throat in order to get more into my system haha I feel like I drink a ton already. We'll see, I guess. I'm a little discouraged because I'd like to stay on the 100mg, but I dunno how much more of the light-headedness I can take. Right now I am on vacation so I'm not at work or required to be up and about, but my condition is really preventing me from going out, even to Walmart. I feel like I can't even walk a straight line or I'm side-stepping into walls lol If it's preventing me from living my normal life, then I don't think it's a good idea. I'll write an update as soon as I figure out what the plan is!

- B

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That doesn't sound good...I'd talk to the doctor and see if you should get a blood test and if the dosage is right for you. I've been on 100 mg for over a month and have had slight fatigue at first but nothing like that. You don't want it causing serious issues

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I think I am just now fully adjusted to 100mg of the spiro it took me some time but my side effects were not nearly as bad!!! Why don't you try lowering to 75 to start with and see how that goes? If you look at others posts..from what I have gathered 50mg will get you clear it will just take considerably more time...which in the long run might not be a bad option for you.. You're right at what cost do you get clear skin.. I don't get light headed Bella I'd be worried if I were you..Good luck!!!

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B,

I was exactly like you. I was light-headed, had headaches and just not feeling right. I kept taking it because I read someone was exactly like me but still kept taking Spiro and after 2 wks their light-headed feeling went away. I noticed this exactly as well at the 2 wk mark. Now I feel great! :)

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Thanks guys, I appreciate your input so much! I'm glad I started this journal because it's nice to know I'm not alone in this! I started taking 75mg and I already feel great! I feel normal now. I'm not sure I would be able to last 2 weeks like that since it was really kinda debilitating, ya know? But I'm glad to know that it would've been likely that my body adjusted to the 100mg. Maybe someday I'll be able to build up to it, but for now, 75mg has already made a big difference. Unfortunately, I've noticed that I'm starting to break out again... probably because I lowered the dosage. Crap... oh well! Thanks again ladies :)

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Give it a week with the decrease in dosage and then you should stop seeing a decline and start seeing an incline.. Are you taking it at the exact same time everyday as well? So glad you feel better Bella you have to be able to function!!!

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Oh my gosh, I was lightheaded, tired, extremely fast heartbeat, and got absolutely HORRIBLE headaches. Now I'm a month in, and that's all ceased. :) It was all frightening to me, but now all of the symptoms have gone away, except that I feel as though my skin is clearing :) Keep with it and best of luck to you :)

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Thanks again for your responses, guys!!

Day 15

Well, I lowered my dose to 75mg and so far so good! I broke out a little bit, mostly in my chin/jaw area, but it's starting to clear up. My skin doesn't feel or look as healthy as it did on the 100mg but maybe I'll eventually see a change once the meds have been in my system long enough. No weird dreams lately and definitely not light-headed like I was. When I was at work yesterday I noticed I got suddenly very light-headed but being on my feet all day, I can get like that even without the Spiro! Also (this might be TMI, just to warn everybody) by lowering my dose it made me start my period when I wasn't supposed to. I had just had my period about a week prior to switching to 75mg so it was definitely caused by the Spiro dose change. Nothing abnormal otherwise, though. So, all is well in Spiro land here :) Unfortunately, nothing to get excited about yet, but we'll see how it goes!

- B

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It's not TMI ha ha. We are mostly girls taking this. However, this is why it's helpful to take BC pills with spiro. Spiro does mess with your cycles. Also, I don't know if I fully agree with the "no topicals" advice. My dd still uses Tazorac and Benzaclin in moderation. Not every night or it's too drying. She takes a lower dose of 50 mgs. 100 mgs. was too much for her too. She is still a pretty tired puppy on Yaz and 50 mgs. Also experiencing some hair loss....but, she's clear again after 6 months of use :dance:

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Shells- I am trying to take it every day at the same time, usually 8pm, but lately I've been finding it hard to keep track, especially if I end up working during that time (my schedule varies because I'm part-time). But I've heard it should be treated kind of like the BC pill as far as taking it at the same time and its effectiveness. Did you start off taking Spiro at the same time every day? If not, did you notice a difference once you did?

Jen & Tash- Glad to hear that your skin is clearing and that those symptoms are gone! Kudos to you both for trudging through it :clap:

Boston- Thanks for letting me know about your dd! I'll probably still use some over the counter stuff from the store since I've never used or have been prescribed anything else. Also, I've heard a lot about the BC pill being used simultaneously with Spiro and that it improves results. I would be on BC except that I hate what it does to my body. It made me gain 15lbs, a cup size in my breasts, and made me extremely irritable and moody. Most women/girls would be thrilled to have bigger boobs, but I love mine the way they are lol The BC I was on was supposed to help with my skin as well but I didn't notice much of a difference. I'll stay on just Spiro for at least another month and see if/how it affects my cycle before considering BC again. I wasn't on Yaz before so maybe I just need to find another BC pill that suits me!

- B

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Hey Bella, I did not originally take spiro at the same time everyday no.. I had no clue I was supposed to. but yes I noticed a difference once I did .. and I notice a difference if I miss it by a few hours. like 3hrs is too much and I get something on my face!

If you sift through some posts and or reviews I believe I remember some people saying that their cycles were out of whack for a bit but now they are fine.. but others had like two periods a month!! bummer.. Hope that all works out for you!

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Day 32

Sorry it's been a while since I've last updated for any one who might be reading my journal here. I've been doing well on the Spiro! I actually switched back up to 100mg. I figured out that if I take the 100mg all at once just before I go to bed, I am able to sleep off any kind of dizziness or light-headedness. The first night I took the 100mg, I immediately noticed an improvement from taking the 75mg. My skin started healing right away, just like it did when I first took the 100mg. I didn't have another breakout although I'm starting to notice three new breakouts -- one on my cheek, one on my forehead, and one on my temple. It's a significant improvement from what I was experiencing before, which would've been multiple breakouts over my chin, jaw, cheek, and temple area all at once. I only seem to be getting small cysts and nothing else. I know Spiro can be a roller coaster experience so I'm hoping that the breakouts don't progressively get worse. The skin on my forehead seems to be getting rough so I switched my cleanser to a cream instead of an exfoliate just so there's not so much stress on my skin. So far, I am pleased with how things are progressing though. I have a follow up with my derm on Friday and I'll update if anything interesting happens.

- B

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I'm not even sure what day I am on but I am nearing my 3 month mark! I am definitely amazed at the results, as Shells said I would be :) My face is the clearest it's ever been since I was 13 (with the exception of a few weeks here and there where my face cleared up for no apparent reason). Since I last posted, my derm increased my dose to 150mg a day. I quickly got used to the 100mg and taking an extra 50mg hasn't made me dizzy or anything like the 100mg used to. My face broke out just a little bit when I upped my dose and I still find that I break out on my chin when it's "that time of the month." Nothing crazy like it used to be though. For instance, I just got done with my period and I only had two small pimples on my chin and a tiny cyst on my forehead. Stuff that could easily be covered up with makeup. The skin on the rest of my face is so soft and hasn't broken out at all (besides when I increased my dosage... I got one small pimple on each cheek that healed quickly). Any of the scarring that was on my face from previous breakouts are clearing up and disappearing. I don't know if that's due to the medication because my skin always naturally heals scars nicely for whatever reason. I'm definitely happy with the results so far! I feel more confident and more enthusiastic about being in pictures now lol I'm increasing my dosage to 200mg at my next visit if it's necessary. I'm happy with the results as they are and I'm not sure if I want to take that much medication if I'm already satisfied. This journey has been very rewarding and I can't say I've experienced anything horrible on Spiro. It took some getting used to at first, but it was worth it.

Right now I'm only washing my face with Clean & Clear deep action cream cleanser. I don't use anything else on my face. I've considered getting some of that Benzoyl spot treatment creme stuff to help with the occasional breakout, just to heal things faster. I am not on any kind of birth control pill either, although I am considering this as well, which might help my skin results.

I'm definitely a satisfied Spiro user :)

- B

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Hi BellA3

Thank you for sharing your Spiro journey with us. It definitely helps those of us who are considering or starting out with Spiro. I am curious, are you taking the 150mg before bedtime? Do you need to get up at night to go to the toilet? Does taking the drug at night lessen the side effects you experienced?

I have just started taking Aldactone and have started with 50mg (25mg in the am, 25mg in the pm). Before reading your journal I was not aware that you should take the pills at the same time everyday. I was wondering if you had success taking the full dosage at night or if you had to split the dosages over the day.

My derm wants me to take 100mg but I am hesitant as don't like taking pills in the first place. However, decided to give it a go after all I read on this site! Hopefully I will have the same success as you and others.

I would love to hear your (or anyone else's) thoughts on the above! Thanks

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Hi BellA3

Thank you for sharing your Spiro journey with us. It definitely helps those of us who are considering or starting out with Spiro. I am curious, are you taking the 150mg before bedtime? Do you need to get up at night to go to the toilet? Does taking the drug at night lessen the side effects you experienced?

I have just started taking Aldactone and have started with 50mg (25mg in the am, 25mg in the pm). Before reading your journal I was not aware that you should take the pills at the same time everyday. I was wondering if you had success taking the full dosage at night or if you had to split the dosages over the day.

My derm wants me to take 100mg but I am hesitant as don't like taking pills in the first place. However, decided to give it a go after all I read on this site! Hopefully I will have the same success as you and others.

I would love to hear your (or anyone else's) thoughts on the above! Thanks

Kosmic, yes, I'm taking the 150mg before bed. It's recommended that you take the pills with food so I've been starting to take them with a snack around 9pm. I find that I don't have to use the bathroom in the middle of the night, however, I always wake up very thirsty! But that is a normal side effect. When I first started taking Spiro, it made me really dizzy so that's why I started taking it at night. When I was laying down with my eyes closed, I wasn't dizzy like I would be when I was standing up and awake. So far it's worked well!

Someone on this board, I think it was Shells, recommended taking the pills at the same time every day because of the effect it has on hormones. I think it can be compared to the reason you take birth control at the same time every day. I'm not 100% sure on any of the previous information, but I do take the pills at the same time every night.

I was afraid to up my dosage too because I don't like taking pills either! But 100mg seems like a perfect dosage. In fact, I want to start taking 100mg again because my skin looked even better on just 100mg compared to 150mg. My skin reacted instantly to the 100mg and I find it's not getting much better on the 150mg and I've been on 150mg for about 2 months. I think results with certain dosages vary depending on the person so I would stick to whatever is working and makes you comfortable :)

Good luck!! Let me know how it works out for you :)

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Kosmic, yes, I'm taking the 150mg before bed. It's recommended that you take the pills with food so I've been starting to take them with a snack around 9pm.

Sorry to threadjack, but where'd you hear that? I'm just curious as I've never heard that before.

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