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DAY 49

Hey guys,

So I know this is pretty late to be starting a log, but I thought I'd give it a go anyway. I started my course of accutane (80 mg/day) on September 10, and now I'm nearing the end of my 7th week. I have been battling acne since I was about 13, and it's been such a pain in the butt not being able to take off my shirt all these years. Right now, my face is completely clear, and I'm soooo happy about that, but my back and chest, and particulary my neck, have never been worse in my life.

Does anyone have any stories to share about their experience with accutane and body acne? I've read a lot of forums saying that people's body acne cleared in the first month of accutane, but I don't see how this is possible because I haven't noticed the slightest difference... yet. In fact, if anything, my body acne has gotten worse. I have bad cystic acne on my neck and it really hurts to twist my neck in either direction. I hate talking to people, and find that they're looking at all of the neck acne I have. Hopefully someone has some advice to give me, because frankly I've dealt with all of the side effects of accutane, but have seen absolutely no results on my body thus far.

As time progresses, I'll let you all know if I see any improvement. Thanks!

Here are some pictures (they are really gross)

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Edited by midbullets

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The acne on my back started to clear about 3 weeks in (check out the pics on my log), but my face has got worse (currently on day 33)

People are different and therefore the results from accutane will always vary in different individuals..

I have pretty bad blackheads and got so infuriated around the 2 week mark when other people had lost theirs.

Although I'm not as far though my course as you my best advice is just tough it out and try not to think about/worry about it all the time. Before you know it another month will have passed, you'll glance in the mirror and notice some clearing, then more and more.

Also never ever pick. I lightly scratched my face today and it looks like I've been punched.. :confused:

Hang in there! :D

Jason

Edited by spots_go_away

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Spots_go_away,

Thanks for replying. I will be sure to keep myself updated with how your accutane experience is coming along too.

As for the advice, yes I will definitely just have to keep toughing it out. I would consider my body acne pretty severe, and I'm not really looking forward to the winter because my acne has historically always flared up in the cold. Hopefully as the months pass by, accutane will keep it all at bay. It's so hard not to think about it because its such visible presence- both in my eyes and the eyes of others. Well, I guess this is just another bump in the road. Hopefully, I'll be on my way to crystal-clear skin!

Best of luck to you and your journey! I've decided I'm going to start taking pictures every week, so I will post those every so often to give everyone a glimpse of my (hopeful) progression.

Edited by midbullets

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DAY 50

So, again, just want to apologize for not really having the previous 50 days to go along with this log. To be honest, I just recently stumbled across these acne.org forums, so I wasn't aware that people were logging their stories.

Anyway, I'll try to summarize the past 50 days briefly: Basically started off with pretty horrible chest/back/face acne. I had nodules/white heads all over. All of my acne was concentrated on my chin area (face), in between my pectorals (chest), and all over my upper back. Every other part of my body was completely clear. Then, about 3-4 weeks in, the acne on my face just completely vanished. It was a miracle. And I hope it stays that way. Unfortunately, almost as a replacement, my neck started to break out HORRIBLY. To this day, I still have a bunch of nodules that are located along the sides of my neck. I'm really not sure why this is because I've never gotten acne there before (maybe because of accutane? Idk). Throughout these past 50 days, my back/chest acne hasn't improved much.

Now to the update: Face is really clear, back and chest seem to be drying out A LOT, but for some reason there are still whiteheads that pop up all over the place. And these aren't just tiny white heads, they're fairly large, which makes it even worse because they leave pretty nasty red marks once the head is gone (due to showering or accidental scratching ect.). My shoulders are starting to break out too and leave some scarring, but it's nothing compared to my chest/back. I'm not really worried too much about my shoulders. My neck, on the other hand, is still horrendous. I really have no idea what's going on. The texture on my neck is soooo bumpy, and for some reason, the nodules on my neck are really prone to inflammation. The sides of my neck look like a mine field, so hopefully soon my neck will start healing without breaking out as much as it has been.

Anyway, I will continue to update my experience. I'm excited to start seeing some results! Please don't hesitate to ask any questions you guys may have for me! Good luck to all of my fellow accutane journeyers!

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DAY 51

Hey guys,

So today was actually pretty good. As I mentioned, my body acne is particularly bad, but I haven't had any new breakouts today, which is unusual. My neck is still really red from all the inflamed acne, and it's awful, but thinking about it too much certainly won't help my cause. Also, the back of my neck is not improving much either. For some reason, I've always had to worry about acne on the back of my neck, for pretty much my entire life. I basically know there's going to be scarring on my neck, but hopefully it fades soon.... I'm so sick and tired of experiencing pain every time I twist my neck. My neck acne seems to consist of fairly deep nodules (really inflamed) and whiteheads. No cysts, I don't think.

My chest is really starting to dry out now. It's extremely red because of the drying, but there aren't a whole lot of really active nodules/whiteheads there. My shoulders are so-so, this is probably the most amount I've broken out on my shoulders, but still, I'm not really worried. My back is doing well too. Still covered in acne, but again, a LOT of drying. there are only two or three deep cysts that haven't really surfaced yet. I pray the accutane is really starting to take effect now that I'm nearing the end of my 2nd month.

No new side effects...just dry lips per usual. I guess I've been lucky because I haven't had back pain, joint pain.... any of that stuff. Just flaky skin that I can treat with cetaphil and chapped lips. I always have chapstick handy.

Hope I start seeing some results soon... I'm kinda getting discouraged at the fact that this body acne is so persistent. And I don't want to have gone through the pain of starting out at 80 mg/day without some compensation earlier in my treatment.

Anyway, take care all. Peace

Bullets

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u poor thing :(...i just really get acne on my face...little bit on chest but very light; i really hate acne and what it does to people; it rapes/pillages peoples bodies for no reason! its 2010 u'd think a cure would've been discovered by now! keep ur head up :)

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jenny and rebecca,

thanks for the encouragement. this body acne is seriously killer though. i really hope this accutane starts working soon. im not sure why my body acne is taking so long to see improvements, but hey, guess i just gotta roll with the punches...

seriously though, thanks again. it helps to know that people out there know what it's like. it's miserable being on such an intensive course, but with no visible results yet. hopefully in these upcoming months I can document some significant improvements!

Ill let you all know for sure.

Bullets

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DAY 53

Hey guys,

Skin is pretty awful today. Got a few breakouts on my face, nothing too significant, but it's still such a bummer because I've been completely clear on my face until now. Also, for some reason, my face is particularly flaky. I put moisturizer on per usual, but my face is still peeling... hasn't happened in a while.

Neck is looking ok. Still a lot of redness and I've got some new whiteheads along the sides. Nothing extreme though. My neck has been itching so much due to all this acne, and it's just so uncomfortable throughout the day... everyday. A lot of it is starting to dry out, but it's still leaving behind really red marks that look horrible. It just sucks because even when I do everything I can to prevent irritation (no fidgeting with it, keeping my collar away from my neck, using a gentle cleanser), it still seems to be so inflamed. I just don't get it. I thought accutane was supposed to be an ANTI-inflammatory antibiotic. Whatever, I'm just going to continue what I'm doing in the hope that the acne will fade. I certainly know picking at it won't help at all.

My chest is terrible. I really have no idea what I'm doing wrong with it. It's drying out like crazy, yet pimples/whiteheads are still surfacing left and right. I'm currently using H&S classic clean because I've heard some good reviews on it, and also the cetaphil bar soap. My skin is very fragile as it is, and especially while I'm on accutane, I don't want to bombard it too much with intensive BP. Anyway, yeh so lots of new pustules formed yesterday/today. It's more concentrated along the upper part of my chest. In between my pectorals, there isn't AS much, but a lot of that stuff has left some pretty nasty scarring. I fear once eventually the acne on my upper chest goes away too, it will leave bad scarring as well.

My back hasn't changed a whole lot. One positive thing is I'm not getting as many deep nodules anymore. Mainly just a lot of surfacing whiteheads/nodules. I feel like my whole body is in a perpetual cycle: I get body acne, accutane dries it all out so it looks decent for a couple days, but then a ton of new acne forms to replace it. Again, this "acne" consists of large whiteheads/semi-deep nodules. It's not really cystic, although I'm still not really sure what the difference between nodules and cysts are. Maybe someone could clarify?

In regard to side effects. Still experiencing more of the same. Chapped lips, dry skin ect. All treatable though. I guess this accutane thing isn't all bad since, for the most part, I haven't had too terrible of side effects despite my heavy dosage. I'm ready for accutane to start working though...

Also, just want to ask a question: Since the majority of it is not cystic, once the accutane truly does start to take effect, will I see noticeable improvements quicker? Thanks for your time, I'll have photo updates soon.

Take care ya'll.

Bullets

Edited by midbullets

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DAY 54

So today is still looking pretty glum. The breakouts on my face are starting to fade which is comforting, but I feel a couple more nodules forming on my back. Although today, my back is really dry. More dry than usual. Most of my acne is starting to scab, and there are some extremely dry patches where previous acne has been. I would rather have that then active pimples though.

My chest is still bad. I'm not really getting much acne on the lower part of my chest (in between my pectorals). However, there is still a ton of scarring in that region. On my upper chest, in a very concentrated area, lots of whiteheads/nodules are active and I feel like more are on the way. If I had to put a number on it, I would say there are close to 20-25 fairly large pimples, not to mention the extreme redness of it all.

My neck is still the same. Had a couple new whiteheads form (really small) along the sides, but overall, I haven't seen improvement. The texture almost feels like scar tissue, but I'm pretty sure it's just inflamed pores that have yet to calm down. The back of my neck is doing better. Still some pustules, but certainly not as much as I had before. It's really only the sides of my neck that I'm concerned about.

Side effects- chapped lips, dry skin. Still some flakiness. Nothing drastic.

Updated pictures of my skin are coming tomorrow. Hopefully that'll give you all an idea of what I've been describing.

Take care.

Bullets

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hey midbullets...

first of all thanks for writing in my log with the support

second i really hope accutane starts doing its thing for you brother...the body acne doesnt look like its too pleasent at all =/. unfortunately i guess we all have our different types of issues.

what ive noticed with accutane is its one baby step at a time...and sometimes you get setback by a random breakout and you're like "what the hell, things were going so great"

me personally, i was clear for about 2 1/2 - 3 weeks, and then this week i broke out again...with about 4-5 pimples on my face one day, then like 3 more the next day. their healing now and I havent gotten any new ones in 2 days (fingers crossed) but it still sucks no matter how bad your acne is...its just discouraging.

i think were REALLY close as far as days go...one sec while i check my calender haha...today is actually my DAY 58....so were only 3 days apart. I'll be keeping up with your log so stay strong bud, it will get better...accutane is a longgggg process unfortunately.

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DAY 55 ----> Pictures Below

I'm nearing the end of my second month, but honestly not feeling too hot today. pictures down below are self-explanatory of how my skin has been doing so far. all of it is pretty painful. my friend hit me in the chest with an acorn yesterday while we were jogging right on one of those large nodules. The pain was indescribable. I had to stop and bend over for a second because it hurt so much. Today, that spot is insanely red and inflamed.

So for all you out there who are well into your course of accutane, but still feeling discouraged by your body acne, seriously, you're not alone. I promise. I don't enjoy exposing myself like this, but I'm doing it for people who might be overwhelmed by their acne and need to know that at least one other person is going through the same hardships. Personally, I hope no one else has this type of body acne besides myself because no one deserves it this bad. I hope I'm just some special case where my hormones (or whatever else is causing this horrendous acne) went haywire and my acne got out of control.

Unless Accutane truly is a miracle drug, I don't how acne of this severity is going to start clearing in my next month. I hear great things about month 3, but honestly, I just don't know. I'm trying to stay positive and not think about it too much, but it's really hard not to when every passing second of the day you're either self-concious, in pain, or just pissed off that you seem like the only person who is dealing with this shit.

Sorry this was such a depressing post. If I can redeem myself, I just want to reiterate that I am staying positive. For all who are suffering the same way I am during your accutane course, please do so as well.

Thanks guys,

Bullets

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Cheer up! It looks like it's drying up! We're just not those people who clear in a day :P

Most of your clearing is supposed to begin in month three but for me it was months four, and five, I hate to say it because it's so cliche, but everyone is different.

Check out my log if you'd like. dorismarilyn.blogspot.com.

Hope you're feeling better :)

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Cheer up! It looks like it's drying up! We're just not those people who clear in a day :P

Most of your clearing is supposed to begin in month three but for me it was months four, and five, I hate to say it because it's so cliche, but everyone is different.

Check out my log if you'd like. dorismarilyn.blogspot.com.

Hope you're feeling better :)

Thanks for your support. In any case, I hope time just flies by.

I will definitely be keeping up with your log. From the looks of it, you're almost done! congratulations.

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DAY 59

Hey guys,

Sorry I haven't been keeping up with daily posts. Honestly, it occurred to me that wallowing in my own self-pity about my acne wouldn't speed up the days while on accutane. So I've decided I'll only do a couple updates a week.

The reason I chose today was because I have noticed slight changes.

Neck: It's still red and inflamed, but fortunately it's not AS widespread. Instead of it being all along the sides of my neck, now my acne is beginning to recede to concentrated areas. Back of my neck is doing ok. It seemed like it was doing well this past weekend, but a couple new nodules have formed over these last two days. Whatever, I'm not going to worry about it too much.

Back: Mostly I'm still breaking out with medium-sized nodules/whiteheads here and there. It's not too terrible, but it just looks bad because I've been breaking out like this for the last 2-3 months, so some scars have formed.

Chest: Still getting break outs on my chest too. I can't tell if they're as frequent as a month ago, but I have found my chest to be a lot less bumpy. For the most part it's pretty smooth, but again, it's just the scarring that makes it look way worse than it actually is.

Side Effects: OK, so this is one of the main reasons I'm updating. Obviously, still getting dry lips and dry skin. But I have also noticed a rash starting to form on the back of my right hand, as well as the back of my left arm (tricep area). I've heard people mention getting these rashes before, but today was the first time I actually noticed mine. I hope this isn't a sign that accutane is becoming too harsh for my body. Has anyone else had experiences with these sort of rashes? It didn't require discontinuing the accutane course, did it?

Thanks again ya'll. Would really love some answers.

Take care.

Bullets

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Hey dude.

Thanks for posting in my log. Sorry to hear that the stuff going on on your chest is so painful... acne sucks just by itself; when it's accompanied by pain, it's just like "WTF why?"

Take the advice you gave me though, it's good advice. Don't get discouraged and hang in there. You're still pretty early on, but you're right at the point where things should start to get better. Your back looks way better already. Also, while it's tough to see the bright side when dealing with this shit, you should understand that not having acne on your face is awesome. I'm sure it's kind of a "grass is always greener" type thing, but I *think* I'd prefer bodily acne to facial.

It'll get better, it very rarely doesn't.

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DAY 64

So today is day 64 and I have a few updates for you guys:

First off, this coming monday I have an appointment with my dermatologist, so hopefully my blood work comes back with no problems and I can continue 80 mg/day

Neck: My neck is doing immensely better. The texture is still pretty bumpy, but the redness is definitely starting to fade, and the acne is not as widespread. One thing I will note though is that scarring is present. Honestly though, I don't really even care that much about the scarring, I just want this damn acne to go away forever. Hopefully the results on my neck will only continue to improve as I progress through this third month.

Chest: My chest is really not a whole lot different from what it was before. I'm still breaking out in the form of painful whiteheads, and even if there has been improvement, I can't tell. I'd have to take another picture soon in order to really evaluate. Nonetheless, I'm just keeping my mind off it. Maybe the accutane is just taking a little longer to begin its work on my chest.

Back: My back is doing well. Earlier this week, I had a couple nodules form, but right now it seems as if they're gone. Besides a few actives scattered across my upper back, I really only have hyperpigmentation. The hyperpigmentation makes my back look way worse than it actually is. When I go into my derm on monday, I'm going to ask if there's anyway to begin treating this hyperpigmentation during my course.

Side Effects: the rash I talked about in my last log is still on the back of my right hand and left tricep, but it doesn't bother me. All I do is just slather on some cetaphil moisturizing lotion and I can keep it under control

I also wanted to mention that I have altered my diet. I'm really cutting out the sugars and fatty foods and beginning to eat salads almost everyday. I haven't been getting as much exercise as I probably should be getting, so I'm trying to make up for it in my diet. I've also been taking Fish Oil (4 capsules x 1200 mg). I can't say I've seen improvements solely because of the Fish Oil, but it certainly doesn't hurt to take them. Btw, does anyone have some ideas of what other supplements would be good to take while on accutane? I was thinking about taking Zinc Gluconate, but I've heard it's bad to take it on accutane because it makes accutane less effective. Suggestions?

Thanks, have a good one.

Bullets

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DAY 67

So not much has changed from my last update. I went to see my dermatologist yesterday, and I'm going to continue on 80 mg/day. I really hope I can begin seeing significant improvements by the time Christmas rolls around, so keep your fingers crossed for me. :D Anyway, here are the updates:

Neck: Starting to get more breakouts along my neckline. These are just small little whiteheads that eventually scab up in a day or so. The acne along the sides of my neck is REALLY starting to dry up now. I don't have very many actives, just a ton of discoloration (due to the scarring) and a lot of flakiness because of the acne drying up so much. When you feel along the sides of my neck, it almost feels like it's scar tissue. My dermatologist explained to me that this was the result of cysts being pushed out by the medicine, but my skin hasn't been able to heal yet. Also, it all looks pretty strange because, besides the scar tissue, I have a whole bunch of scabs on my neck. Not sure what to think of that.... anyway, at least I'm not getting as many actives.

Shoulders: I've had a lot of recent breakouts on my shoulders. Not sure what the problem is, but there are lot of nodules forming. They're also starting to scar, but fortunately they seem to fade within a couple of weeks.

Chest: Chest is still the same. Pretty frequent whiteheads popping up every few days and a couple painful nodules, as well as a lot of drying. I haven't seen much clearing because of the breakouts. It's a little frustrating that I'm still breaking out this much, but I'll be patient. I can't wait till I stop getting actives so the skin on my chest can start to recover.

Back: My back is drying up a lot too. There are a fair amount of patches of skin that are extremely dry. I haven't been getting as many cysts anymore, but every few days or so a couple new ones form. It seems the progression I've seen in the last few days has plateaued. My back is by no means clear, but it is better than at the start of my treatment.

If ya'll have any questions for me, I'd be happy to answer. I know these logs don't really help people dealing with facial acne because, fortunately, accutane got rid of the acne on my face in the first few weeks, but anybody with body acne should feel free to ask away. It would be great to hear any stories anyone else has about their accutane treatment too.

Take care

Bullets

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DAY 70 ----> Updated Pictures Below

Wow, I can't believe it's day 70 already. For anyone who's dealing with acne and is using accutane, the days go by a lot quicker if you just try not think about it... at least that's what I've experienced.

Quick update-

Neck: Today it's not great, but it's not horrible either. The right side of my neck is improving a lot, but the left side is still really red and flaky. I'm still getting pustules form at the back of my neck in a different areas. It's not the end of the world, but I would love to start seeing consistent results soon... particularly on my neck.

Chest: I don't have as many new breakouts on my chest today, but I've pretty much concluded that the healing process on my chest is going to take forever. I'll have to wait till summer when I can go out and get a good tan before I see the scarring start to fade. It's kind of a bummer, but if accutane clears this crap up and keeps me clear for good, I'm so willing to do this.

Back: Nothing out of the ordinary has happened on my back today. There haven't been many new cysts form or anything, it's looked about the same for a week or so. My shoulders are now what I'm worried about. Nodules are becoming more persistent on my shoulders, which really sucks because it hurts to carry my backpack around school.

Also, just a quick piece of information I forgot to add from my derm. appointment earlier this week. I was told I'll be on 80 mg/day for a total of six months. Has anyone else gone through such a high dose course? Whenever I see people who are on 80 mg/day, they usually only go through 4 months of treatment. Is my dosage fairly normal for the amount of time I'll be on accutane? I would really appreciate some feedback.

Thanks.

Bullets

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DAY 70 ----> Updated Pictures Below

Wow, I can't believe it's day 70 already. For anyone who's dealing with acne and is using accutane, the days go by a lot quicker if you just try not think about it... at least that's what I've experienced.

Quick update-

Neck: Today it's not great, but it's not horrible either. The right side of my neck is improving a lot, but the left side is still really red and flaky. I'm still getting pustules form at the back of my neck in a different areas. It's not the end of the world, but I would love to start seeing consistent results soon... particularly on my neck.

Chest: I don't have as many new breakouts on my chest today, but I've pretty much concluded that the healing process on my chest is going to take forever. I'll have to wait till summer when I can go out and get a good tan before I see the scarring start to fade. It's kind of a bummer, but if accutane clears this crap up and keeps me clear for good, I'm so willing to do this.

Back: Nothing out of the ordinary has happened on my back today. There haven't been many new cysts form or anything, it's looked about the same for a week or so. My shoulders are now what I'm worried about. Nodules are becoming more persistent on my shoulders, which really sucks because it hurts to carry my backpack around school.

Also, just a quick piece of information I forgot to add from my derm. appointment earlier this week. I was told I'll be on 80 mg/day for a total of six months. Has anyone else gone through such a high dose course? Whenever I see people who are on 80 mg/day, they usually only go through 4 months of treatment. Is my dosage fairly normal for the amount of time I'll be on accutane? I would really appreciate some feedback.

Thanks.

Bullets

hey man,

your back is looking good, kind of like mine right now. your chest has gotten a lot better too.

your inquiry about being on 80mg for so long... I'm on 80 too, and I don't think i'll be on it for 6 months, probably 4. don't take my word for it, but how i see it is, if you're not getting any bad side effects like joint problems and whatever, then there isn't much of a problem with that. I don't know...

Anyways, I wish you the best.

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nicolodi- yeh my back has been improving a ton in recent weeks. its fantastic. my back has never been this clear at this time of year in a long time. Seeing my back gives me a lot of patience for my chest. I'll just let accutane keep chuggin.

Also, thanks for the advice and I appreciate the reply. Yeah I guess if I'm not feeling any major side effects, it wouldnt be bad for me to stick on 80 mg for six months. It's good because I'm not really experiencing any side effects apart from the chapped lips. And I'm hoping I can actually take six months, because that'll mean I'll have a better chance of this acne not coming back after treatment.

Good luck on the rest of your course.

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I see a big improvement! I used to have really bad chest and back acne when I was younger. I went on a course of Accutane at that time. My face acne is now back (8 years later, but my chest and back acne never returned). Your acne looks very painful...I am on day 25 of accutane this go around and today is the first day my acne doesn't hurt. It's ironic because I thought that when I was clear I would be happy, but even just having the pain go away is AMAZING!

Good luck on your course- hang in there!

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hey midbullets

i haven't been on acne.org as frequently as i used to a month ago so today i've been taking the time to check up on all the people i've been folllowing.

i checked out your most recent pictures and its obvious accutane is workin for you!

your back is looking awesome like you said....both sides of your neck have deffinately improved...and honestly just look like mostly red marks now.

i even see improvement in your chest too. it looks WAYYYY less inflamed and red...looks like mainly some small stuff lingering around.

keep up the good work bro stay faithful.

Jay

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tgrah2010-- I'm glad to hear that your body acne went away on your first course of accutane. That gives me a lot of encouragement. But I'm sorry the acne on your face returned :(

its ok though, accutane will work wonders for you just like it did the last time!

jay-- yeah man, i'm so happy i'm starting to see some improvements on my neck and back. All this crap used to be super painful, but now that there are a less amount of actives popping up, they're all just becoming marks and scars. I'm not to happy about the scarring, but at least it isn't painful to twist my neck anymore. It's an amazing feeling.

Hopefully you're treatment is going well. I'm looking at yours every so often, and the fact that you haven't updated as frequently is probably a good sign. Seems to me like the acne isn't the biggest deal in your life anymore. Anyway, keep us posted man as much as possible man. Take care.

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