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I have been struggling with adult acne for the last 10 years. It has been moderate to severe including whiteheads, blackheads, and cystic acne. I have tried ProActive, ZenMed, Retin-A, Microderm Abrasion, Tetracycline, MyChelle, Neutrogena Acne Treatments, etc. I have also tried different vitamins, herbal supplements, etc.

I found that being on a general Multi-Vitamin was helpful and of course the Tetracycline worked great for 2 years and then I became immune to it and the acne returned. I have also had some luck with the MyChelle products including the Clear Skin Serum and Clear Skin Spot Treatment. Proactive did not help me at all personally. I do like ZenMed's cleanser, so I still use that which doesn't dry out my skin and feels nice. Retin-A worked on and off, but it was never consistent and I was never completely clear. I also do really like the Microderm Abrasians, which really help with the scarring and clear off the dead skin cells and leave my skin looking young.

However, my chiropractor recently recommended that I take a blood test that measures your vitamin and mineral content on a cellular level, which is in theory the most effective method for testing for deficiencies. I have tried various vitamins over the years and have found some benefit, but I was hopeful that this might tell me exactly where I'm deficient and what doses would be helpful for me in particular, since people's bodies are all different.

I was very open to trying anything at this point in an effort to avoid taking Acutane due to all the side effects, so I gave it a try. My test showed that I was deficient in Vitamin E, Selenium, Calcium, Magnesium, and Vitamin C. I have done some research showing that deficiencies in all these areas can cause acne, so I then consulted with my chiropractor and began taking the supplements and doses she suggested. And my face cleared up!

It has been 3 months and my face is clear most of the time. I do still occasionally get a pimple during my cycle or when I'm stressed out, but overall my face is clear and has been for awhile now. So, I decided to post this information on the Acne board, since I always appreciated all the information posted by people who were going through the same thing.

I did not post my doses of the vitamins I am taking because I am writing this at work and don't have the bottles in front of me, but also because these doses worked for me given my blood test and might not be effective for everyone. I will be happy to post my doses when I get home just so everyone has an idea of what has worked for me.

The testing company is Spectracell Laboratories at www.spectracell.com. There is a link at the top where you can click on "Find a Clinician" who can order the test for you, since it does have to be done through a doctor. I am in Austin, TX, but I believe they have doctors all over the U.S. that can order this test.

I will also say that acupuncture was recommended to me for my acne. I've had acupuncture before for back pain and my face was more clear when I was seeing the acupuncturist although we didn't address my acne specifically since my back pain was so severe...it was the prime issue. So, that is another recommendation I have.

I wish everyone struggling with acne all the best and hope you each find something that works or helps. People who don't suffer from acne just do not understand how it affects your life everyday and how much stress and lowered self esteem occurs. It feels like a weight you carry around each day and now that my face has been clear I feel so much lighter and happier. And when a pimple does come up it clears up really quickly without me having to do anything other than take my supplements. Best of luck to all of you!

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