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AIDW0330

Accutane / Clarivis Log Moderate Acne 23 Yr Old Male

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Hello,

I am a 23 year old male who has been dealing with mild - moderate acne for the past three years. I understand that some of you out there have it way worse than I; however, I feel myself constantly self aware of my acne and tend to stay in the house when I have break outs. I decided to go on accutane not only because of the severity of my acne (which has gotten much worse recently) but because it is uncontrollable. I have been on proactive, doxy, clyndamycin and strictly monitored by food intake which all seem to help for a little but it eventually comes back. When I think I understand how to control my acne and am on a good regimen it somehow just comes back.

I am a second year law student and have recently got a great summer job which helps me not think about my acne. Hopefully, the accutane will make me clear by then and I can start the next chapter in my life acne free. I am prepared for the initial out-break, no sun/partying, and. am hoping the next four months go by quickly. I find these forums helpful, especially because non of my friends have acne so no one understands what it feels like and more importantly I am lucky to learn from others. I find that these boards are more informative than any previous doctors I have ever seen.

I weight 155 lbs and am on 60mg a day of claravis. I got rid of all my old acne supplies and have purchased aquaphor, cetaphil lotion and face wash. I currently have two active pimples and my sideburns / jaw line each have about 15 dormant and red pimples from my last break out.

At this point I have two questions. First, I play sports frequently and lift weights. How will accutane affect me? Second, my doctor did not start me with the low dosage first. Is this uncommon?

I will add photos when I get a chance.

good luck to all the accutane users out there.

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I want to start off wishing you the best of luck with your treatment! I am 23 year old male as well and I am currently on day 3 of my treatment. I weight about 200 pounds so my derm has started me off with 80 mg of claravis a day. So far so good for the most part. My acne is moderate, but like yours, persistent and uncontrollable. I don't have much light to shed on the lifting weights part, because I haven't expereinced muscle or joint aches yet, but it seems it depends person on person. As for the high dosage, I was in the same boat as you wanting to start at a low dosage. I have a typical 9-5 job doing marketing and wanted to minimize any side effects possible My derm said I would see the best results starting at my recommended dose, which seems to be about 1 mg per 1 kg you weigh. She said that this way my treatment should last about 4 months and that I may not even have an initial breakout with my skin type (I would love to believe this, but we will see, espcially with nuking my body with 80mg a day). Best wishes and ill keep following your log since our age and treatment times are the same!

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Thanks for the above reply.

Today is day 3. I have noticed that my face is very oily. Should I be wiping it with something or just leave it alone? Also, I had gotten two new white heads on day 2; however, they are already gone. I am not sure if this was the accutane but I generally do not get these small white heads and if I do they are not gone in a day. I have not noticed any change with dryness of skin or lips (but I have been lathering the aquaphor on so maybe that is delaying the dehyrdartion process). Today I am going to play some tennis and go to the gym after. Hopefully, the notorious soreness will not come into effect.

Good luck to everyone out there.

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Day 5

I am starting to see the effects of the drug. My lips are dry and my face is beginning to flake. None of these side affects are visible to others but I feel them. My face is still oily but not as bad as day 3. The most irritable side effect is the tightness of skin that is located on the crease of my nose. A few tiny white heads appeared there and if I crinch my face I can feel some of them popping. But they are practically invisible to the eye. My old acne is starting to slowly fade and is not raised above the skin. They primarily appear to be red marks. Over the last few days I have gotten several new small pimples; however, they all seem to disappear within 24 hours. I'm hoping that this will be an indicator of an easy Initial Break Out period but I do not want to get my hopes up. I have maintained sports and have not seen any negative affects yet. However, since I began the drug I have taken 30 min naps mid day after i get back from class. I never did this before and suspect it is related to the drug but I cannot be sure. Otherwise all is well.

Also, I have been using cetaphil lotion to combat the dry skin. I just realized that nowhere on the bottle does it say use for "face" but it does say noncomedogenic. Thoughts? Is there anything better?

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You can use cetaphil lotion on your face. As long as it is noncomedogenic you are good. I use cetaphil moisturizing cream which comes in a tub that will easily last months. This stuff is really thick and gives you a greasy look so I only use it at night, but it does the job. I would recommend that, as well as many others users because that seems to be one of the most popular moisturziers to use while on accutane. I have no complaints! As far as a day moisturizer I haven't been using one yet. I had some Cerave Lotion in my bathroom that my derm recommended, but it makes my skin look shiny in daylight. Not as bad as the cetaphil moisturizer cream, but I would like something that absorbs a little better.

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I agree the cetaphil lotion is thick so I really only use it at night.

DAY 6 update

Well, it appears I spoke to soon regarding the possibility of an "easy" Initial Break Out. I noticed one big new pimple and a few smaller ones scattered around my face. The new pimples are nothing extraordinary and are tolerable. To be fair, it is likely I would have gotten these new pimples even without accutane so I am not sure whether I would classify it as an initial break out in response to the tane. Generally, when I would get a pimple such as the one I have now pre-tane, it would last for quite some time. I will keep you all posted whether the recovery time is quicker. My face is still oily; however, parts of my face (especially my nose / upper lip) are peeling.

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DAY 10

Sorry I have not been updating my log daily. Changes are not drastic so from now on I will do periodic updates. Face and rest of body is getting dryer. Lips are very chapped. If I do not have the aquaphor for a few hours my lips will get so dry and tight. Luckily, I have been good about applying it frequently. Good news is that accutane has not affected my workouts or sports, but I have found that I sleep longer hours. Besides four new active pimples, my previous red spots are beginning to fade. Most of the pimples are small except one which is huge-larger than I ever had one before. I am assuming it is an effect of the accutane. I also noticed a few patches of small pimples on my neck. I never got them there before accutane and have heard that is common to break out in new places. I am hoping that this is the extent of my IB. Although I am only on day 10 my doctor started me out on a high dosage of 60mg per day. I weight around 155lbs. Therefore, I have had a similar total drug intake to someone who has been on accutane for 3 weeks at 30 mg a day. I will keep you posted.

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Day 18

Results!! I can honestly say that Accutane is kicking in. My last break out cleared. I am still getting a few random pimples here and there but I can happily live with that ( at least for now). I also notice that when I do get new pimples they heal quicker then normal and are not inflamed. Currently, I have about 3 active pimples. This is a huge improvement from 3 weeks ago when I had about 40. Now to address the side effects. My lips are dry; however, I have been careful to consistently apply acqaqphor. I have not been 3 hours without it. After 3 hours of applying it I feel my lips tighten up and begin to peel. My face is also peeling, primarily my nose, upper lip and chin. I use lotion most nights before I go to sleep which seems to help. Social Life: well I have had beer a few times since I began the drug. I went out two nights last week and limited myself to one beer each night. I did not feel that it affected me in anyway. Last night I had about 7 beers. I did get tipsy but nothing out of the norm. no side effects either-not even a hangover. Before I went to bed I chugged about 1/2 gallon of water so maybe that helped. I understand that dangers of drinking on accutane and will not be drinking for a while.

Good luck to everyone else out there.

I forgot to mention that the skin on my feet is blistered. I do run a few times a week but do not get blisters. Maybe the accutane is making my skin weaker?

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Day 30-something.

Well, I have to say that I am very thankful for accutane. So far I am very pleased with the results. My skin is not near perfect; however, I feel it has become average in relation to my peers (bottom range of average but still within range). I still get a few pimples here and there and my complexion is somewhat blotchy; however, when I look in the mirror I don't say wow ACNEE. My biggest issue with my skin now is the amount of oil my skin produces. I use lotion twice a day. i find when I do not use lotion my skin peels excessively. If I use my face wash (cetaphil) and forget to use my lotion my skin will quickly begin to peel. I've heard of jobo jobo oil and would like to give it a try. Is it less greasy? Any tips?

Onto the side effects. My lips are still very dry and chapped. I frequently apply carmex and aqaphour. Maybe 8-10 times a day! I noticed that my skin is very sensitive to getting scratched. I play basketball a few times and week and not oncehave I come home without bloody cuts. They do not bleed alot but my skin is broken easily. MY shoulders have some dry spots and chest has tiny little acnes and dry areas. I never struggled with body acne so i suspect it is a result of the accutane.

Drinking/Social life: So the first month I drank several times and my blood results came in fine. I advised my doc that I had been drinking and he said some of his patients drink daily have no effects while others drink once and have an effect. I read over the entire CLARAVIS disclosure pamphlet and did not see any warnings agaisnt alcohol consumption. Can anyone point me to some literature on the topic? I do not wish to undermine any one advises me not to drink; however, considering the strict disclosure and warning requirements if it was so dangerous to drink wouldn't a warning be in the package? It is possible that a warning is in there and I missed it. If you are on claravis please take a look at yours and see if you find it. Thanks for following my story.

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Good job with your progress so far! I add a couple drops of jojoba oil to my moisturizer at night because it helps fight the dryness even better, but don't even think about it during the day. Your skin, even with just a drop or 2 of jojoba oil will look greasy during the day. At least that's my experience with it. When you say your problem is with the amount of oil your skin produces, do you mean it produces too much or too little?

Regarding drinking, don't do it during your accutane course. Even though you are using claravis and you didn't see any explicit warnings, isotretinoin is still the active ingredient and it still takes a HEAVY toll on your liver. Drinking alcohol is just gonna stress your liver out more, potentially weaken the accutane's effectiveness, and you may even end up with some long-term side effects. Bottom line is if you want the accutane to work most efficiently with minimum short-term and long-term side effects, just cut out the drinking for now or drastically reduce it. Good luck with everything bro!

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Thanks for the response. I will reduce the amount I drink. Also, i believe my skin is producing too much oil. Although it may just be the lotion I am using that gives me the greasy feel. However, I find that I must use the lotion after my face wash or I will start to peel. (I use cetaphil face wash and lotion). It's difficult to explain my skin texture. Parts of it are dry, parts are greasy and shiny, and most of it is sticky. Is this dry face, oily face idk. Something in off balance for sure.

2 more things I forgot to mention was that I found during the first 30 days I always had hard boogers in my nose that were bloody. Sometimes it was troublesome to breathe. They have substantially gone away now.

Also, as for my current acne, I have been getting some deep-under the skin pimples around my chin. I have only gotten two thus far, but they stay for a long time. Last one was almost 3 weeks. It takes a while for the head to form. If you have these do not play with them they only get worse. They are not very noticeable from to other people unless I point it out but I feel them for sure. Any advise on these? Should I let them take their course?

Edited by AIDW0330

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Yeah it's most definitely the lotion. The Cetaphil lotion gives me a very greasy look. I use 1.5 pumps at night and half a pump during the day. What I do to control the oily look is I apply the moisturizer, then let it absorb for around 10-15 minutes. This might sound weird but it's something that many people do, use the toilet seat paper covers you might find in public restrooms to blot out the oil on your face. Next time you're in one, just grab a bunch. They leave the lotion on your face but work perfectly to absorb all the extra oil.

Oh and definitely leave those under the skin pimples as they are. One thing you might want to try is get an icepack and hold it to those areas for 15 minutes or maybe less once a day. Helps decrease the inflammation and swelling.

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I cut down on the amount of lotion I was using and my skin feels much better. I was probably using about 2 full pumps morning and night. I now realize how little I need to use. I also think my skin was feeling extra funny because the cetaphil cleanser takes oil out of my face and then the lotion made it greasy. My cetaphil wash says for normal to oily skin. Do they make a wash for dry skin? Which cleansers do you all use. I find if I use my cleanser and skip the lotion I will begin to peel.

Also, the ice trick helped a lot with the big-under the skin pimples. I went out the other night with a lady friend and was tempted to pop it in the shower. Bad idea. It looked fine that night but now it developed a huge dry scab. Still, I am thankful that all I have to deal with is the occasional pimple rather than the occasional mountain range of pimples.

I have been staying away from using a razer blade on my face since I started the tane (I have been using my electric.) I think tomorrow I am going to shave clean for the first time. Hopefully it wont break me out....this is what triggered my last break out pre-tane. If anyone has tips on shaving while on tane please let me know. I have heard to use cleanser instead of shaving cream.

General Acne update: Week 5/6

I have two active pimples, one on my forehead and one on my chin. They look big but are mostly from my own doing picking at them. My previous breakouts began to heal very well and are not noticeable in standard light. My skin has been going through weird stages where it looks like I am sweating from the amount of oil, yet it felt sticky/dry. My lips are very dry still. Skin is weak on the general body and scraches easily. Overall satisfactions is very high! still on 2 times a day @ 30mg.

Edited by AIDW0330

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As far as a cleanser for dry skin, check out cetaphil's "gentle skin cleanser". That's definitely the best cleanser out there when your skin is peeling. Make sure to keep your lips moisturized and try not to pick. Icing is always good and you want to avoid warm water when washing your face because anything warm on your face will increase inflammation.

Edited by wshewfelt

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Week 6

I just purchased CeraVe cleasner. Not sure how much "cleansing" it does for my face; however, it is much softer on my skin. It almost feels like I am applying lotion to my face when using it. Also, about 6 weeks into tane, this is the first day I am virtually acne free. I do have a few tiny spots, old red marks, and a couple dry patches but no one's skin is perfect. A quick look at my face and you would not notice any acne. I feel great. So for those of you who have started off with only moderate acne I would say it takes about 6-7 weeks to clear it up. I understand odds are it will not stay this way and I may have a break out coming soon. But for now, I'm clear.

Also, the cleanser I was using before was the CVS knock-off brand of Cetaphil normal-oily skin. I believe it was slightly too drying for my face.

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New Side effect. I am currently in the 6-7 week of the drug and have noticed that my biceps and elbows have developed a rash. Initially, I only noticed one arm and thought it was from a scratch i recieved playing sports that got infected or irrated the dry skin. But now i noticed it on the other arm as well. It is not painful, sometime it does feel annoying though-dry, itchy w/ slight burning. I began to use lotion on my arms and will update whether it has helped. This monday I have a doctors appointment and will raise the issue with my doctor. On the plus side, my face looks better now than it ever has in past 12 months or so.

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Looks like nothing is too easy. I'm on week 9, and after a week or so of clear skin, I got 5 new pimples scattered around my face. I did recently begin taking some vitamins (not vitamin a offcourse) and maybe I can attribute it to that. It is also final exams so maybe it is stress / poor eating habit related. In any event, I will keep you all posted.

Also, for the past week or so my chest began to break out. Not sure if it is acne or a rash. I never had acne on my chest before.

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Did you find anything more effective than cetaphil as a moisterizer? Always seems to break me out for some reason. Sounds like I have almost the same skin/acne as you, too; I have blotchy, oily, and greasy portions on my face and my acne is primarily either small whiteheads or red marks which I desperately hope vanish after I have finished my course. I'm also 19, just to speak in relative terms.

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Looks like nothing is too easy. I'm on week 9, and after a week or so of clear skin, I got 5 new pimples scattered around my face. I did recently begin taking some vitamins (not vitamin a offcourse) and maybe I can attribute it to that. It is also final exams so maybe it is stress / poor eating habit related. In any event, I will keep you all posted.

Also, for the past week or so my chest began to break out. Not sure if it is acne or a rash. I never had acne on my chest before.

I'm on week 9 as well...and experience bad break out on my chest! It's SO strange! I haven't had it like this before... But I've heard that Accutane can kind of create acne in places that you've never had it in the past... That is sooo great eusa_liar.gif

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Did you find anything more effective than cetaphil as a moisterizer? Always seems to break me out for some reason. Sounds like I have almost the same skin/acne as you, too; I have blotchy, oily, and greasy portions on my face and my acne is primarily either small whiteheads or red marks which I desperately hope vanish after I have finished my course. I'm also 19, just to speak in relative terms.

I decided to stick with the cetaphil and after abt 3 weeks everything got better. I sometimes also take a few days off from any wash / moisturizer to let me skin just be itself and it seems to help every once in a while. I did switch to CeRave cleanser though and I like it much better.

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Still breaking out here and there. The life cycle of my pimples have been quite similair. Day one - under the skin not noticable to sight but i could feel it. Then it would surface and slowly turn into a white head. The white head would last for about 2 days or until I scrapped it off in the shower. Than it would leave behind a red mark for about two weeks. it seems as soon as one dissapears a new one comes up and with the slow healing process of the red marks it makes just a few pimples appear to be a decent amount of acne. hope it goes away soon. On the plus side the rash on my chest is almost gone.

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Roller Coaster! My skin has gotten worse. My acne has changed from regular white heads to a few cystic pimples around my chin. Although there are only about four, they are inflamed, sore and irritable. My skin also feels worse in general. I know understand the tane burn. Luckily, over the past day or so I have seen an improvement - but like I said roller coaster.

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Things are getting better! I am on week 12. However, I went to the dermatologist the other day and told him about one deep, under the skin pimple that has been bothering me. He suggested that we try cryotherapy. Crythotherapy works by freezing the pimple using liquid nitrogen. Although the pimple is gone I strongly advise not to use such therapy while on accutane. In place of the pimple is a large (much larger than the pimple) blister. After doing some research it appears that this should not be done while on accuatne. just a heads up. Otherwise all else is well.

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