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Isotretinoin for closed comedones log

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 I am a guy in my late 20's and I've had mild acne for 10+ years, mostly in the form of closed comedones on my cheeks, forehead and chin. Under certain lighting they look really really bad. I tried AHA, BHA, BP, Differin, Epiduo and anti-biotics however nothing worked. It has really damaged my self-esteem and I really feel self-conscious speaking to people in natural light at a close proximity. 

In light of the above, my dermatologist suggested I go on a course of Isotretinoin. 

  • 5mg twice a day for 2 weeks
  • 10mg twice a day for 2 weeks
  • 20mg twice a day for 2 weeks
  • 70mg once a day thereafter

I hope this log will be of use to someone with closed comedones as I couldn't find much else online. I will try and update it every week. 

Week 1 (5mg twice a day) 

I take the tablets with lunch and dinner as my breakfast does not contain enough fat (its all carbs etc). 

I have noticed my lips are dryer than usual, and have started putting alot of Vaseline on them before bed every evening. I am using Cetaphil moisturizer and tbh even though its alot thinner than the other cetaphil creams I still feel like it gives my skin a shine which i dislike  (being a guy). No changes in the comedones (as expected given its only been 1 week).

  Edited by Atlas2017
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Week 3 

I have been taking 10mg twice daily for the past week. No real sign of an initial breakout (could be due to the dosage still being quite low). In terms of side effects, lips are quite dry and I'm having to use vaseline and other lip remedies throughout the day. In terms of my skin, it's dry but not as much as i expected. Using the centaphil before bed and in the morning seems to be working for now. My closed comedones still remain. However i do think they are appearing slightly more raised than normal (which I hope is a sign that they will get flushed/pushed out). 

In terms of going to the gym, i've had some very mild joint pain throughout the week (in my arms), however that may also be because I am lifting heavy weights at the moment. I am alot more thirsty than usual (i usually drink 3 litres a day, now I'm 3.5). 

I will post an update in a couple of weeks when I move up to 40mg a day.

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Our skin condition looks same. Please keep update this topic. I'm really curious about to going on accutane. I pretty much tried everything against comedones. Accutane is my last hope :C

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Week 7 

I have been on the 70mg for one month now (I take 30mg with lunch and 40mg with dinner).
My skin is clear but the comedones are still present but perhaps ever slightly decreasing. 

In terms of side effects, lips are peeling quite alot now, but I've stopped using Vaseline as i've heard it can actually dry the lips further. Instead i'm using some other lip products and its not too bad. I've switched from Centaphil moisturiser to EFFACLAR H soothing moisturizer 40 ml by La Roche-Posay. It's a much thinner cream and although it makes my face shiny (like the Centaphil did), i just feel it sits easier on the skin. 

Other side effects i've had are looking slightly red, but because i have olive skin people keep asking if i've been on holiday as it must look like i've got a sun tan. 

I'm slightly worried the accutane won't budge the closed comedones but, it's only been one month on the 70mg, and from reading other people's logs, it takes 2-3 months for progress.

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Hi apologies for not updating this. I was adamant at the start of the thread that i didn't want to just disappear without updating as seems to happen with alot of posts here. 

So i've finished the course 2 months ago now. My skin still feels and looks good on the cheeks and chin BUT on my forehead the closed comedones have returned. Which is very disappointing but hey that's life and i will have to learn to accept that. 

In terms of side effects, in the last two months of the course i noticed hair thinning near the front of my head. Luckily i have very thick hair so it wasn't too obvious. But it's been 2 months since i've been off accutane and the hair still appears thin in that spot. I'm hoping it grows back and have read on other threads that thinning is quite normal and hair growth returns to normal after coming off accutane.

All in all, i'm happy i took the pills as i feel i look clearer, but the only negatives are the comendones on my forehead are back and my hair thinning in one spot. 

Good luck and thanks for reading. Edited by Atlas2017
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