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Christine's Accutane Diary

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Day 6

Dec 6 2009, 10:22 AM (Copied from my blog)

Hello! I'm 23 and have been battling acne on and off since I was 11. I took Birth Control Pills from 2000-2005 which kept my acne very minor. I decided to go off BCP in March fo 2005 as I found it difficult to lose weight while on them. My skin stayed relatively clear until October of 2005 when I broke out HORRIBLY. I decided to go on Accutane in January 2005 as I knew my dad had taken i back in 1982 and it changed his life. I was on it until July 2005 and it was very much worth it. I started Accutane with severe, painful acne and was overweight and by the time I had finished I had clear skin and had lost 50 lbs.

My skin was very clear with the odd minor pimple until about October 2008 when I started to break out again. It got REALLY bad by Christmas 2008 and I started to become very depressed. I tried topical Retinol-A for about 5 months but it made my skin a mess.

After a year of trying various topicals, supplements, and diet changes I've given up. I went to the dermatolgist November 25 and was approved to start Accutane November 30.

This is my skin on November 24. I only had breakouts on my neck and left cheek but my cheek was a mess of red marks, deep scars, and painful acne. I'm hoping Accutane will cure my left cheek like it cured my right cheek and forehead (I never break out in either places):

Me before Accutane:

November 25, 2009

My webcam makes my skin look a lot better than it really is.

Edited by tv_viewer

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Day 15

Dec 14 2009, 08:55 PM (Copied from my blog)

So far my side effects have been pretty minimal. My skin is a bit red but it's easily covered with foundation. I have been moisturising like crazy in order to prevent the rashes I got last time I was on Accutane. I have been breaking out like I normally do but the pimples are healing very quickly.

This winter is going to be very brutal though. I live in downtown Toronto and don't drive so I walk a lot outside everyday. I went for a long walk this weekend with my boyfriend and my skin was on fire from the cold wind.

I went to my dermatologist today and he said I should've gotten my bloodwork done again last week so I have to get it tomorrow. My next appointment is in 3 weeks so I don't know when to get my 3rd bloodtest.

I asked him how long he expects me to be on Accutane and he said "16 weeks" which does NOT seem like a enough time to me. My prescription for my second month is 40 mg (I weigh 98 lbs/44.5kg) and I was hoping for an increase. On my first course of Accutane I took it for 6 months and was up to 60mg by my second month. I'm freaking out because I don't want my acne to come back.

My derm is in my home town about an hour from where I live so I have to go spend the weekend at my parents' every time I have an appointment since I don't drive. I was looking at old photos of myself from a few years ago on the family computer and it made me so depressed to see how clear my skin used to be. My skin isn't even that bad right now it's all the red marks that make me feel so horribly.

Day 21

Dec 20 2009, 12:26 PM (Copied from my blog)

My skin is feeling pretty normal. It's a bit dry but my skin is always really dry in the winter. I've been moisturising like crazy and I think it's really helping. For a while my eyes were feeling super dry since I wear contacts. I bought eye drops and have been using them 2-3 times a day and now my eyes feel fine.

I've still not had an initial breakout. My skin was fine yesterday morning but once I washed off my makeup at night I noticed I had lot of new tiny pimples (I usually never get those, just big ones) and I kinda freaked out a bit. When I woke up this morning they had all dried out and are flat so they're just red marks. I'm not too upset about them because I know I'm going to be having to wear makeup for a little longer anyways.

I currently have no active acne on my face, just dried out old ones and I feel pretty great about that. I really hope I don't have a bad breakout but then again if I do I know it won't last. I feel like my derm thinks I really shouldn't be on Accutane but it's because my acne is so stubborn and even though a pimple might only last a week the marks they leave like to hang out on my face for almost a year.

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To tell you the truth I can't see no 'mess' on here so yeah consider yourself lucky :) I hope your treatment will be effective this time.

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Day 27

Dec 26 2009, 06:28 PM (Copied from my blog)

My skin looks pretty bad, but much like my usual monthly breakouts so I'm not sure if this is my initial breakout. I'm starting to break out on my right side of my face where I never break out but atleast I know that's the Accutane working.

I'm really paranoid that I won't be on Accutane long enough. My derm wants me on 40mg for 16 weeks and with me weighing 44 kg I should be on it for atleast 5 months. I guess I'm just going to have to ask/beg. I was on 40 for one month then 60 for 5 months the last time yet my acne still came back. I just want my life back and the real me to come out of hidding.

To tell you the truth I can't see no 'mess' on here so yeah consider yourself lucky :) I hope your treatment will be effective this time.

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Day 29

One more pill and I'm done my first pack!

My skin is a bit better. The acne I had the other day has dried up so I just have the red marks left over. This is the week before my period and normally I'd be breaking out really badly and so far my skin has been pretty good.

My skin is getting more dry but it's probably due to the winter. I notice that I only have an Accutane burn on my face at night after I take my pill and it's gone down a lot in the morning.

Here is a photo of my left side (my "bad side") from the other day:

December 27, 2009

I haven't had an acne problem with the rest of my face or my body thanks to my first course of Accutane it is just this area. Seeing this photo makes me realise my skin is A LOT better than I seem to think it is. I definately have some kind of complex.

I was cleaning out my makeup and stuff today to pick out things to throw out and realised how many skin care and face makeup products I've wasted my money on to achieve perfect skin. What a complete waste:

$$$$ down the drain haha

Edited by tv_viewer

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Looking from your latest pic your acne is like mine, I've been on it for a month and its feeling a lot better.

I've been on 40mg and now going up to 60mg in a few days, I read that you used to be on that dose? How long did it take until you started seeing like real improvements? Thanks! :)

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Looking from your latest pic your acne is like mine, I've been on it for a month and its feeling a lot better.

I've been on 40mg and now going up to 60mg in a few days, I read that you used to be on that dose? How long did it take until you started seeing like real improvements? Thanks! :)

Well my acne was much worse when I was at that dose on my first course, but I didn't see major improvements until around my 3rd month. If your acne looks like mine now I'm assuming you'll see results sooner than that.

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I cleaned out all of my old products the other day, too. How crazy are we to have wasted soooo much money over and over?! Glad we both wisened up :) Good luck with your treatment!

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I cleaned out all of my old products the other day, too. How crazy are we to have wasted soooo much money over and over?! Glad we both wisened up :) Good luck with your treatment!

I don't even want to think about how much I spent haha. Thank you :)

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I cleaned out all of my old products the other day, too. How crazy are we to have wasted soooo much money over and over?! Glad we both wisened up :) Good luck with your treatment!

I don't even want to think about how much I spent haha. Thank you :)

i feel you guys. i have been a product junkie since oh- 1993 or so. I have spent waaaaay too much money on my skin and i can't even bear to think about all the time, energy, tears, and frustration that went along with the struggle. accutane was the best investment i ever made for my skin and the effects lasted about 4 years. exactly why i'm on it again. i'm right there with you tv_viewer- 2nd time around is going to be a charm!

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I cleaned out all of my old products the other day, too. How crazy are we to have wasted soooo much money over and over?! Glad we both wisened up :) Good luck with your treatment!

I don't even want to think about how much I spent haha. Thank you :)

i feel you guys. i have been a product junkie since oh- 1993 or so. I have spent waaaaay too much money on my skin and i can't even bear to think about all the time, energy, tears, and frustration that went along with the struggle. accutane was the best investment i ever made for my skin and the effects lasted about 4 years. exactly why i'm on it again. i'm right there with you tv_viewer- 2nd time around is going to be a charm!

Yeah, even though Accutane is expensive I think in the long run it's cheaper. My boyfriend thought I had a shopping addiction but really I was just trying to fix/hide my skin and didn't care how much it cost.

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I cleaned out all of my old products the other day, too. How crazy are we to have wasted soooo much money over and over?! Glad we both wisened up :) Good luck with your treatment!

I don't even want to think about how much I spent haha. Thank you :)

i feel you guys. i have been a product junkie since oh- 1993 or so. I have spent waaaaay too much money on my skin and i can't even bear to think about all the time, energy, tears, and frustration that went along with the struggle. accutane was the best investment i ever made for my skin and the effects lasted about 4 years. exactly why i'm on it again. i'm right there with you tv_viewer- 2nd time around is going to be a charm!

Yeah, even though Accutane is expensive I think in the long run it's cheaper. My boyfriend thought I had a shopping addiction but really I was just trying to fix/hide my skin and didn't care how much it cost.

so true! I'm a self-diagnosed makeup and product addict, but when I really sit down and think about all the money I've spent on my skin I kind of feel sick, haha.

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Day 32

My skin has been pretty good up until today. My face looked clear but red this morning but around lunch time I looked in the mirror and noticed a few dark cysts popping up and they're so dark they show through my (heavy duty) makeup. I guess this is my initial break out because it's more severe than acne I've had so far on Accutane.

I really don't want to go out tonight for New Years with my face looking like this. I'm giving up drinking because of Accutane so it's not like it'd be balls of fun anyways.

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Heyy! You're right- we did start the same day. Do you have an idea of how long you'll be on accutane? My derm said probably 6 months for me.. so 1 month down! They just increased my dosage from 30 to 40mg yesterday.

What did you find out about having to go on a second course of accutane? Is it typical with your type of acne? Because I will tell you, my skin looks JUST like yours. Mine has more red spots, but from your picture on the first day you started this blog, our problems look the same. I typically get cysts on my cheeks and chin, and whiteheads on my forehad, under my nose, and my chin.

Good luck with everything! I will definitely be following your log since we started the same day!

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Heyy! You're right- we did start the same day. Do you have an idea of how long you'll be on accutane? My derm said probably 6 months for me.. so 1 month down! They just increased my dosage from 30 to 40mg yesterday.

What did you find out about having to go on a second course of accutane? Is it typical with your type of acne? Because I will tell you, my skin looks JUST like yours. Mine has more red spots, but from your picture on the first day you started this blog, our problems look the same. I typically get cysts on my cheeks and chin, and whiteheads on my forehad, under my nose, and my chin.

Good luck with everything! I will definitely be following your log since we started the same day!

My derm says 16 weeks at 40mg which doesn't seem like enough for me so I'm going to push for 20 weeks as I don't want my acne to back.

I never thought I'd have to take it again. I did get some very minor acne after Accutane but it never bothered me. Accutane worked for my dad so I thought it'd do the same for me. I started to break out horribly Dec. 2008 and although my skin got a bit better throughout 2009 it was still bad enough to upset me. My acne is only in one area though, Accutane cleared my body and most of my face except for one cheek.

I never get white heads, just cysts. I think it's just that Accutane works for most people but not everyone, and I'm one of them. I don't expect it to clear me for the rest of my life this time, but even if it's for another 3 years I'll be happy. Good luck :)

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Day 33

Happy New Year!

My skin is getting a bit worse. It's very flakey and dry and I have a new break out on my left cheek. Although I didn't drink yesterday I did eat like crap which is probably why I'm breaking out.

Here's a photo of my left cheek this morning:

Day 33 no makeup

And this is the same area with makeup on:

Day 33 with makeup

I think I need a heavier foundation. Does anyone have a recommendation?

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Day 37

Not much to update really. My skin is doing pretty well. I have a couple of cysts but they're near my ear and not that visable.

I'm mainly posting because I wanted to post some pictures of what Accutane did for me the first time around. I know it can be a bit scary for people starting Accutane to see postings on here from people going on Accutane for a second or third time. My acne came back, but NO WHERE near as badly or as widespread as before.

Here is my face in December of 2004, a few weeks before my first course of Accutane:

Right side of face Dec/04

Left side of face Dec/04

My face was so painful I had to sleep on my back and I began to skip classes as I was too embarassed to face people.

Besides these pimples, I also had loads of blackheads on my nose and chin, plus cysts all over my back.

This is me during & after Accutane treatment (My face changes as I lost 50 lbs while on Accutane):

Month 1

Month 2

Month 3

A couple of months after Accutane

A year after Accutane

4.5 years later I have:

*No acne on my forehead (literally not a single pimple in 4.5 years)

*No acne on the whole right side of my face

*No acne on my back or anywhere on my body

*Not a single blackhead or whitehead in 4.5 years

So although I had acne come back to the left side of my face, Accutane was worth it the first time. It completely changed my life and also encouraged me to be healthier and lose a lot of weight.

Edited by tv_viewer

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hi tv viewer. you have given me sooo much hope. i have been on bcp for the last 4 years and i just stopped. all the acne (cysts) came back and im so devastated right now with the face. from clear skin to what im experiencing right now. i too am month 1 on accutane. no changes yet.im still in my initial breakout stage. i am entering month 2.hopefully its gonna work. il keep u posted.

PS: u r very beautiful! =)

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hi tv viewer. you have given me sooo much hope. i have been on bcp for the last 4 years and i just stopped. all the acne (cysts) came back and im so devastated right now with the face. from clear skin to what im experiencing right now. i too am month 1 on accutane. no changes yet.im still in my initial breakout stage. i am entering month 2.hopefully its gonna work. il keep u posted.

PS: u r very beautiful! =)

Aww, I'm glad. That breakout I had in Dec. 2004 was from going off BCP after 5 years. I hope you have good luck with your course. Accutane really does wonders! And thank you :)

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Hey Christine, I'll be following your log of course! Just noticed it. Best of luck and thanks again for all the advice!

Thanks Anthony :)

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i'll be following too tv_viewer! Good luck!

Thank you:)

Day 39

I have one minor new pimple but it's nothing big to worry about. The main things that are bothering me are just the red skin and dry eyes.

I'm really worried that I won't be on Accutane long enough this time. My culmative dose will only be about 106mg/kg whereas on my last course it was 155mg/kg yet it still came back. I feel like my derm doesn't really even want me on Accutane so it's going to be hard for me to get another month if my skin keeps clearing up like it is.

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Has anyone here ordered pro-activ?

I remember my first time. I caved from watching the infomercial. I was so pumped when the package arrived.

1 month later...

Wow, pro-active was destroying my skin. Basically it made acne worse. Then another pro-active shipment came (they hook you this way).

And then began my collection of acne products, which ended up filling up an entire drawer and medicine cabinet. Terrible...

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Has anyone here ordered pro-activ?

I remember my first time. I caved from watching the infomercial. I was so pumped when the package arrived.

1 month later...

Wow, pro-active was destroying my skin. Basically it made acne worse. Then another pro-active shipment came (they hook you this way).

And then began my collection of acne products, which ended up filling up an entire drawer and medicine cabinet. Terrible...

I was always really wary of Pro-active. It's just well marketed BP.

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