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LLL3

My Accutane log

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I just took my first Claravis pill today. I will be taking 60mg daily for 6 months. I'm pretty anxious/nervous because I've been trying to start the drug since the beginning of Jan. I failed the first blood exam because my ALT and AST levels were a bit high. This was due to my "experimentation" with vitamin A supplements. Then I had to wait several weeks for my Doctor to return from a "trip". Then I had trouble with iPledge. Here I am, almost 2 months later, and I just took my first pill.

I've been doing my own research about the drug since about October so I have an idea about what to expect. Here's my acne history:

I'm 25/male and have had mild/moderate acne since I was 14. I've spent the last 10+ years trying most over the counter products. Around age 20, I tried antibiotics. First was tetracycline, then was doxycycline. I continued to use these with little results up until about sept 09, where I decided to stop the antibiotics. That is when I began my research on Accutane.

I'll be posting updates on here every once in a while. I'll try to post pics also. All comments are appreciated!

-Pasha

Edited by LLL3

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Good luck with your course! Yes - accutane is a pain in the ass to get. It's probably easier to get your hands on heroin than it is to get accutane nowadays. ANYWAYS - congrats on starting. You'll have clear skin in no time.

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Day 2:

I started noticing dry lips today. I did not expect that to happen so soon. I've also been feeling a little more tired than usual. No difference in skin.

I'll only be updating if there is something new happening to me.

ot: I mustered the courage to tell some of my close friends about me being on accutane. I figured they would know somethings up eventually when we are out and I won't be able to drink much. or they will wonder whats going on with my lips/skin. better to just tell them now to avoid any awkwardness in the future. Now, I need to find a way to let my clients/co workers know about this. any ideas?

Edited by LLL3

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Day 4 (morning)

After showering this morning, I noticed my face was red. No new pimples in 2 days and the current ones are going away. I've also been feeling pretty tired throughout the day. A little trouble sleeping last night.

I have 2 questions: Would it be alright to smoke weed every now and then while on my course?

I'm taking 40mg Claravis in the morning and 20mg Amnesteem at night. Is anyone else mixing brands?

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Hope goes well with your course? I am not sure if mixing brands matter much since it is basically the same drug but I honestly never really heard of anyone mixing it. I have heard people having switched to other brands because of prescription coverage issues but if you could I would try to stick to one brand at one time.

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Day 5

My face is still pretty red. Existing acne continues to clear. 1 or 2 new pimples. Face is getting dry and flaky in some spots. Face and scalp is a little itchy and tingly at times, esp after showering. Overall, I feel weak.

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end of week 1: 60mg/day

25/male/150lbs

My face is so dark. I look like I went tanning. Oil production is much less than before the course. I start seeing oil drops 3 hours after washing, as opposed to 1 hour after washing. I'm breaking out again all over. I don't know if it's a "normal " breakout or the IB. I've been developing a small itchy rash on my right wrist. I've been applying some lotion on it so I'm not too worried about it. I still get pretty tired during the day - I feel it "kicking in" about 45 mins after my morning 40mg pill. Sometimes I feel "hazy" and headaches are recurring. Also, my scalp and face gets itchy at times, esp at night during sleep.

The first few days I noticed that I've been getting a little dry so I started using Cetaphil cleanser for gentle skin. That solved the dryness problem for the most part. My lips are actually not that bad YET. I do expect them to get much worse so I'll be prepared. I have been using a lip balm since day 2 so maybe that delayed the reaction a bit? I get comments about my shiny lips all the time lol.

I'm drinking 8-10 cups of water/day, still eating extremely healthy, and doing all the things I did before the course began: changing pillow case every day, washing 2x/day, only a little "on the spot" bp sometimes. Only difference is I'm not 'steaming' my face over boiling water as much. I've done that once this week. Also, I'm not moisturizing at all- when I see my face starts getting too dry I'll start moisurizing, but for now I kind of like having a not so shiny face.

I'm having a hard time getting over the embarrassment of some side effects: red face, shiny lips. I havn't gone out in public for quite some time. I just dont have the confidence. However, I'm not torturing myself over it. I still get together with friends indoors and I make good use of my time. Clients at work are giving my strange looks...expected. I LOOK REALLY STRANGE. If they ask, I will tell them. I'm just trying to focus on the fact that this accutane course is all for the long run, so I need to put up with the bs for now.

What do you guys/girls use for your lips? I have pretty big lips for a dude and they are really sensitive so I hate have shiny lips all the time. It just looks silly lol. Any ideas??

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Day 8 (morning)...

Last night's "sleep" was rough. I woke up in the middle of the night because of extreme itchiness. My scalp/crown and face especially. I applied some eucerin itch relief cream on my face that I got from my derm but there was nothing to do about my itchy scalp. I continued to lay there all night half asleep and waking up every 20 mins due to the itchiness. It was really awful. This morning's shower included use of eucerin body oil with itch relief and head&shoulder's dandruff shampoo and cetaphil gentle cleanser on face. I don't feel itchy anymore but I did notice I'm breaking out with little tiny whiteheads around my eyebrows and sideburns. I wonder why it's itchy only in these spots...

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You shouldn't be using head and shoulders dandruff shampoo for an itchy/flaky scalp. Apparently dandruff is caused by excessive oil clogging pores, whereas the accutane related scalp issues are dryness and flaking skin. Try a moisturizing shampoo. People on here recommend Neutrogena T-Gel Stubborn Itch or the Original one (not the dandruff control one)or a hair/scalp conditioning treatment. I got the Burt's Bees Avocado Oil Pre-Shampoo treatment for $6. Smells delicious, works well, especially if you have short hair.

Hang in there!

For lips at night I use aquaphor. You can lather it on and by morning lips are soft. During the day I use Nivea Moisture Kiss or Blistex medicated (i recommend moisture kiss, as the blistex is a little thick and leaves a white residue for a while until it absorbs).

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DAY 9 morning

I went out last night and purchased Neutrogena Tgel, Eucerin Daily Body Wash oil, and Nivea A Kiss of Moisture chapstick. My scalp itch immediately subsided after using the Neutrogena Tgel last night and even more after this morning's use. I have zero scalp itch now!! I plan to use this shampoo 2x/week from now on. Should I use a "normal" shampoo on the days I'm not using the Tgel or should I only wash with the Tgel 2x a week? The Eucerin Daily Body wash works really well also. My skin feels smooth and itch free after using it. I just applied the Nivea chapstick and it smells/tastes and feels great! It also doesn't make my lips too shiny, which is a relief. lol

My itchy face is still a slight problem. I've been applying eucerin calming cream and it definitely helps but it doesn't last that long. I applied it on the itchy areas last night before sleep and woke up 4 hours later due to the itching, so I reapplied and went back to sleep.

Today I look decent. I have some acne over my right eyebrow and some on my cheecks but it's not that bad. The worst I guess is the shine. My face is not oily, only shiny if that makes sense. I'm not sure what to do about that. I will apply clearisil vanishing cream later to make it look normal.

The "rash" on my right wrist is going away and I have no itchiness anywhere! I feel great but my body gets tired out more quickly than before the course began. I feel my arms getting tired now just typing this on my laptop lol. or that could just be because I haven't eaten breakfast yet lol. I've rambled.....check back soon!

-Pasha

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just stopped by to say hang in there and check other peoples logs. They address aot of the issues you have been having. Check out mine as well.

Drink Water!! lots of it!!

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DAY 10

I slept really well last night with no itching thank God! I used St. Ives Apricot exfoliating Scrub last night immediately after steaming my face over a boiling pot of water(which does an amazing job of opening my pores). It made my face very red afterwards and it looked sooooo shiny and felt tight. However, after this morning's shower I look pretty clear! and a little less shiny. No new acne today, everything I had yesterday seems a lot smaller and less noticeable. Was it the apricot scrub? I'm not sure, but I know I won't be able to use that harsh stuff later one when my skin gets more sensitive so I figured I'll give it a try now while I'm still early into my course.

My skin has been producing a lot less oil than before the course but I can't get rid of the shine, which is noticeable from the time I dry my face after washing all through the day. Any ideas?? sometimes, I use Clearisil vanishing cream before heading out to get rid of the shine but it's such a hassle and it's kind of messy. I sort of blot a tiny bit on everywhere. If I smile after applying that, my face cracks and I look ridiculous lol. but I guess holding back a smile is better than having a shiny face. I mean VERY shiny. like it can reflect the sun and blind someone! lol

Any suggestions about shiny skin? It's actually a problem I've always had even before accutane, since like age 16. I use Cetaphil gentle cleanser.

No new side effects to report today.

-Pasha

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The only thing I can think of is cover up. You know.....make up. Like girls wear. Thats the only thing I can think of. Oily is one thing....but you're not oily.....you're just shiny....I know that cover up takes the shine away...

OR uhmmm....I heard baby powered I think. Not sure on that one. Check it out.

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DAY 11

I wasn't able to sleep last night AGAIN due to extreme itchiness. I got about 1 or 2 hours tops. I used the Tgel when I "woke up" this morning and the itch subsided. How long should this itch last? I really hope not the entire course!!

As for my face, I'm pretty sure that the Initial Breakout is in full swing :( I broke out all over my forehead and checks. My face is the darkest it's been. I have a kind of Latino complexion now. Oh well, acne actually has not been bothering AS MUCH I should say as it used to because now I know that it will one day be much better. I have that assurance because of accutane's reputation of being a 'miracle' drug.

A lot of it has to do with the fact that I "found myself" about a month ago, but that's a different topic.

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DAY 12

I think my allergies kicked in today for the first time this year. The warm probably explains it, almost 60 degrees. I took a Claritin D pill in the afternoon and it seemed to help a bit with my allergy symtoms but, ( Don't worry, I checked with my doc to see if it's ok to be taking Claritin with accutane.) I feel kinda tired/high right now, as if I took a benadryl. Normally, the Claritin doesn't make me tired at all so I guess it's the combinations of meds I'm not now that is cause the drowsiness.

As for my skin, I have the worst acne I've had in a long time. I'm getting pimples in places where I don't typically get them, like on the back of my neck near my hairline behind my ear. Also, the pimple look kind of different than usual. I have a few big ones that are just like bump under my skin - looks really nasty near brightly lit areas :( I'm pretty sure this is the IB that everyone seems to get while on their course. My face is not as shiny as yesterday, which is great, but the dryness is definitely starting to show. Today was the first day where I started getting harshly dry lips- been applying Nivea moisture kiss every few hours or after I eat/drink water. Water is all I drink lately, and lots of it ! My scalp is not so itchy today Thank God so I hope I can get a good night's rest tonight.

I'm doing a good job in terms of not letting the break outs get to me. I'm actually more confident than ever in front of my clients. Sort of like "here, look at me, this is what I look like, the real me, I'm ok with that because eventually I will look better" this mentality has been working very well for me!!

-Pasha

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DAY 13

So, I don't think I have allergies just yet, I think it's a cold because Claritin D, which always works for me as a miracle drug for allergy symptoms, isn't helping now. It's only making me very drowsy. Tonight I will try to take 2 Tylonol Cold capsules so hopefully that'll do the trick.

Skin: I've noticed that pimples come and go much more quickly now than before. Most of the zits from yesterday have a white surface already. My face seems to be returning to it's natural complexion and it's not as shiny as it was 3 days ago. There is no itching anywhere anymore either.

I stayed home today because I have a constant runny nose, constantly sneezing, and feel soo sleepy. I slept from 1am -9:30am last night, which is perfect, so I know it's from the meds.

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TWO WEEKS COMPLETED!!

I have a cold. runny nose, sneezing, headache, weak all around, some fever. Tylonol Cold helped a lot last night so I had a good night's rest. Now I have to go back to work.

My face and lips are getting very dry. Today my face is noticeably dry. I think I need to start moisturizing. I used Tgel today and will continue to do so every other day in the shower. No itching to report Thank God! I haven't shaved in a week so that plus my dryness and pimples, I look really disgusting lol. Oh well f**k it! I'll shave tonight.

The small bumpy rash on my right wrist that I started noticing around after week 1 is almost completely gone.

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It's funny you mentioned that because I just started taking vitamin C drops a couple of days ago. I thought it couldn't hurt.

DAY 15

My face looks decent today! All the zits I had yesterday (sooo many) seem much smaller and some are completely gone. What a roller coaster ride geez! All I did yesterday was shave, then wash with Cetaphil like usual, then apply AcneFree Severe Retinol Renewal complex step 4. I also applied it the night before. I guess it did the trick!! i can't wait for the day that my skin is ALWAYS good every single day!!!

No new side effects to report. I'm still sick with a cold but a lot better than yesterday. Overall, I feel week due to the cold and all the meds I've been taking, including accutane. I overslept a bit last night but I think my body needed it to recover.

My good friend's 25th bday party is this saturday night. I'm excited/nervous about going. I really hope my face looks good by then because there will be a lot of people. If I go, I need to be prepared to be open with everyone about me being on accutane for my acne because they are going to ask questions when they see that I'm the only one without a drink in my hand. The bday boy and my other 3 friends know because I told them and they have loud mouths. I'm sure that later in the night when everyone is smashed, someone will come out and try to tease me about not being able to drink due to my acne medication. Oh well f**k it! let them know. It'll most likely destroy any chances I have on hooking up with any girl but I'm going to have fun anyway. sober fun yay!!! lol

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DAY 16

I look really decent today. Once again, everything I had last night seems smaller and much less noticeable! I steamed my face over a boiling pot of water, then washed with Cetaphil, then applied AcneFree reitnol removal stuff. I just have one dark fat one under my left eye that I'm not too worried about. It looks like it'll go away by the end of the day and it's easy to cover up anyway.

Now my left wrist is getting a rash similar to the one that was on my right wrist, except not as bad. I started putting Eucerin cream on it the minute I noticed it. My hand are sooo dry all the time. Vaseline doesn't work at all. I need to use the Eucerin intensive hand repair cream but when I wash my hands, I need to reapply all over again so it's a hassle. My lips are really dry but not flaking or cracking yet because I'm constantly applying chapstick/aquaphor. Face is getting more and more dry also. After I wash, it feels so tight like I can't even smile. Oil production also seems to be a little more than last week. I can see/feel drops of oil after only 2 hours now, instead of 3 or 4 hrs. The tip of my penis is getting pretty dry; I had to apply eucerin cream on it last night. My mouth almost always feels dry and I get dehydrated very quickly. Basically, EVERYTHING IS GETTING A LOT MORE DRY! lol

My joints/muscles feel a bit sore but it could be from getting sick. I guess a few days will tell weather it is from the cold or from accutane. If it persists, it's obviously from accutane considering I haven't been doing any aerobic activities since I started the course.

I'm excited about my friends bday party tomorrow night!! I look decent as of now so I hope it either stays the same or gets a little better (obviously I hope that lol) by tomorrow night. No alcohol for me! This will be my first party or social gathering amongst friend where I am not to touch any alcohol lol. It should be interesting.

My cold is over and done with!

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DAY 17

I look even more decent today!!!! :):) The big fat one under my left eye is not so big and fat anymore lol. and not as dark either. I can easily cover it up now for the party tonight! Last night I thought I had broken out a lot worse than ever before but then I did my new regimin: wash, steam face over boiling water, apply retinol removal. I woke up today to an almost clear looking face! I have a bunch of tiny pimples that are barely noticeable from more than 3 feet away so I'm not worried at all! No dark or red spots anywhere except for that one under my left eye. I guess the tane burn matched the color of all the old marks?!?

I shaped my hair up this morning and I have a new shirt and jeans so I will look sharp tonight :) I can't wait!

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